Martin Shkreli is currently dubbed as “the most hated man in America.” He is a young entrepreneur who managed to make it on his own. However, he placed shareholders’ interests for money above clients and common sense. His peculiar yet offensive business strategies wreaked havoc among competition and increased the price tag for a vital drug from $13.50 to $750 for one pill. His reputation caught up with him, and no potential jurors can be unbiased towards Shkreli.
The Defense Lawyer Portrayed Shkreli as a Crazy Genius
On Wednesday, Martin Shkreli went through the opening statements for his own criminal trial for fraud. While the prosecutor identified the suspect as a fraudster and a liar, his defense lawyer portrayed a young genius instead. Ben Brafman opened the case by stating that Shkreli might be crazy, but that doesn’t change the fact that he offered his investors millions of dollars.
“Maybe he’s nuts, but that doesn’t make him guilty.”
The current Brooklyn federal case has nothing to do with the 5,000% price hike for a vital drug that happened under Shrkeli’s leadership. However, there are other eight litigations against him for wire fraud, securities fraud, and money mismanaging. Shkreli pleaded not guilty. If the jury finds it otherwise, the young CEO might get 20 years in prison.
All 250 Potential Jurors Knew Shkreli by Reputation
On the other hand, his public image marked him as “the most hated man in America.” Out of the 250 potential jurors that appeared in front of the committee for this case, no one was a good fit to take up this role. All of them knew Martin Shkreli by reputation, and some had even someone dear to them who depend on the pills for which Shkreli increased the price with no justification.
The case is scheduled to take four to six weeks for a verdict. However, it needs 12 jurors and six alternates to start the procedures. Shkreli’s lawyer asked for a mistrial and interdiction for journalists to attend jurors’ interview. However, none of these demands were approved.
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