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Wanted Rajat Gupta to walk free but evidence overwhelming: jurors

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Wanted Gupta to walk free but evidence overwhelming: jurors (Image: Reuters) Wanted Gupta to walk free but evidence overwhelming: jurors (Image: Reuters)
Summary'I wanted to believe the allegations weren't true.' - Jury foreman

The jury, which convicted one of the most prominent Indian-Americans in the US Rajat Gupta of securities fraud, said it wanted him to walk a free man after the trial, but the evidence against him and his “need for greed” was just too “overwhelming.”

Former Goldman Sachs director Gupta, 63, sat expressionless, flanked by his lawyers, in Manhattan federal court as the jury read out its guilty verdict yesterday.

It was a difficult day not just for Gupta and his family but for the jury of eight women and four men as well.

As the 12-member jury left the courtroom after delivering its verdict in Gupta's month-long insider trading trial yesterday, two were in tears.

Gupta's four daughters broke down and sobbed loudly as the guilty verdicts were pronounced while his wife rested her head on her hand and leaned on the courtroom bench.

Gupta looked at his family now and then, giving them a consoling glance. After the jury left the courtroom, he hugged his lawyers and walked up to his wife and daughters. The emotional family stood in a huddle for a long time. Gupta did not speak to the press as he left the courthouse, mobbed by journalists and camera persons.

Jury foreman Richard Lepkowski, 51, who read out the verdict in court said he had not wanted to convict Harvard-educated Gupta of insider trading.

“I wanted to believe the allegations weren't true,” Lepkowski told reporters after US District Judge Jed Rakoff adjourned the case yesterday afternoon. “Here was a man who came to this country and was a wonderful example of the American Dream.”

“But at the end of the day, those allegations on which we found guilt -- the evidence was overwhelming,” said Lepkowski, a New York resident and an executive at the nonprofit Children's Tumor Foundation.

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