|Evan Greebel, center, leaving court in 2015. After his conviction on Wednesday, he faces up to 20 years in prison. CreditJohn Taggart/Bloomberg|
Martin Shkreli, former hedge fund manager, and convicted, incarcerated felon, is held by most Americans in contempt for raising the price of the anti-parasitic drug Daraprim to $750 a pill, from $13.50. Now his lawyer Evan Greebel has been indicted for helping Mr. Shkreli in the scheme to defraud Shkreki’s former pharmaceutical company, Retrophin.
Truly a pair of greedy turds, in my opinion.
A lawyer who once advised the former drug company executive Martin Shkreli was convicted on Wednesday of helping Mr. Shkreli defraud a pharmaceutical company.
The lawyer, Evan Greebel, who was outside counsel to Mr. Shkreli’s former drug company, Retrophin, was found guilty by a jury in Brooklyn of charges he conspired to commit wire fraud and securities fraud, prosecutors said.
“We are shocked by the verdict,” said Reed Brodsky, a lawyer for Mr. Greebel. “We will continue to fight for justice for Evan Greebel and his family.”
A different jury found Mr. Shkreli guilty in August of defrauding hedge fund investors, but cleared him of conspiring with Mr. Greebel to steal from Retrophin.
The acting United States attorney in Brooklyn, Bridget Rohde, said the verdict sent a message to lawyers that they would be held accountable when they “use their legal expertise to facilitate the commission of crime.”
She added, “By helping Retrophin C.E.O. Martin Shkreli steal millions of dollars and cover up Shkreli’s fraud, the defendant Evan Greebel betrayed the trust placed in him by Retrophin’s board of directors to represent the company’s best interests.”
Mr. Shkreli, 34, became notorious in 2015 when, as chief executive of Turing Pharmaceuticals, he raised the price of the anti-parasitic drug Daraprim to $750 a pill, from $13.50. The price increase was unrelated to the criminal case. He is awaiting sentencing on the fraud conviction.
The charges he and Mr. Greebel faced were related to Mr. Shkreli’s management of, Retrophin and of two hedge funds he ran, MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare, from 2009 to 2014.
Prosecutors have said that Mr. Shkreli lied about the funds’ finances to lure investors and concealed devastating trading losses. They said he paid investors back with money and shares stolen from Retrophin, which he founded in 2011.
Mr. Greebel was charged with assisting Mr. Shkreli in defrauding Retrophin through a series of settlement and sham consulting agreements.
In September, after his conviction, Mr. Shkreli was jailed after he offered a $5,000 reward in a posting on Facebook for a strand of hair from the former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. That prompted United States District Judge Kiyo Matsumoto to revoke his bail.
Mr. Greebel denied wrongdoing, and at trial, his lawyers sought to distance their client from Mr. Shkreli, whose provocative public behavior earned him the nickname “pharma bro.”
Mr. Brodsky told jurors during his opening statement that Mr. Shkreli lied to Mr. Greebel just as he had lied to investors.
Mr. Greebel was also accused of conspiring with Mr. Shkreli to exercise secret control over Retrophin shares belonging to several other shareholders. Mr. Shkreli was found guilty of that charge during his trial.
William F. Sweeney Jr., the assistant director-in-charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s New York field office, said investment fraud remained a priority.
“While it’s become increasingly more evident that Greebel exploited his knowledge of the law in his efforts to break the law, today we finally see justice served in a case that’s spent no shortage of its time in the spotlight,” Mr. Sweeney said.
When he is sentenced, Mr. Greebel faces a maximum of 20 years in prison.
Mr. Greebel, 44, was a partner at the law firm Katten Muchin Rosenman when he was working for Retrophin. He later joined the firm Kaye Scholer, but resigned after his arrest in December 2015.
|Evan Greebel and Martin Shkreli|
Evan Greebel, who remained a partner at Kaye Scholer despite being indicted for allegedly funneling cash from biopharmaceutical company Retrophin Inc. to investors in hedge funds founded by Shkreli, is no longer a partner at the firm, according to spokeswoman Andrea Orzehoski.As for the exact date of Greebel’s resignation, Orzehoski would only say that it was recent and declined to discuss the results of the firm’s internal investigation of the attorney. Orzehoski said last month that upon conclusion of the probe, “the firm will take appropriate action.”
Gibson Dunn partner Reed Brodsky told the court on Feb. 8 that he will be defending Greebel against the criminal charges. Gibson Dunn partner Joel M. Cohen and counsel Lisa H. Rubin were also added to Greebel’s defense team, according to court records.On Friday, Jonathan S. Sack and Benjamin S. Fischer of Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello PC were allowed to withdraw as co-counsel for Greebel, leaving Gibson Dunn as Greebel’s only attorneys.