Judge Denies Rajaratnam's Bid to Toss Conviction

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Galleon Group hedge fund founder Raj Rajaratnam has lost a bid to have his conviction thrown out after he was found guilty on insider trading charges in May.

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U.S. District Court Judge Richard Holwell on Tuesday denied Rajaratnam's renewed attempt for a judgment of acquittal on his conviction by a Manhattan federal jury on five counts of conspiracy to commit securities fraud and nine counts of securities fraud.

A spokeswoman for Rajaratnam's defense team had no comment on the ruling.

Holwell is expected to sentence Rajaratnam on Sept. 27.

Federal prosecutors accused Rajaratnam of trading on inside information from corporate executives, traders, and others, resulting in $63.8 million of illegal profit.

In a court filing last week, prosecutors asked for a sentence of between roughly 19-1/2 and 24-1/2 years, calling Rajaratnam ``arguably the most egregious violator'' of insider trading laws ever to be caught.

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Lawyers for Rajaratnam argued for a sentence ``substantially below'' what the U.S. guidelines recommend, citing his failing health and his public works.

Holwell is not obligated to follow the guidelines when he delivers his sentence.

The case is USA v Raj Rajaratnam et al, case No. 09-01184. (Reporting by Andrew Longstreth; Editing by Gary Hill and Matthew Lewis)