On Friday, it was reported that the former attorney who represented “Pharma Bro’s” Martin Shkreli in a case involving charges of defrauding investors, has now been “sent up the river” himself as he was sentenced to 18 months in the slammer.
In December of 2017, Evan Greebel, who was the corporation counsel for Retrophin; (the pharmaceutical company that Shkreli headed) was found guilty by a jury of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit securities fraud. Prosecutors say he schemed with the “Most Hated Man in America” to loot Retrophin in order to pay off Shkreli’s debts, according to the NYP report.
In a voice reverberating with emotion, Brooklyn federal court Judge Kiyo Matsumoto said that she was of the belief that Greebel was “truly generous and kind” before handing down his sentence. Calling Greebel’s conduct “egregious”, however, she said that his role in the dastardly scheme that Shkreli devised to defraud the hedge fund investors was a “crucial” one. Shkreli had lost all their money in a trade gone awry.
According to the NYP report, the government presented a case against Greebel in which they claimed that he “embraced” his relationship with Shrekli, who they refer to as “the devil.”
Documents submitted by Greebel’s defense attorneys referred to the now disbarred lawyer a “mensch” (a decent human being) and cited his community service as an Eagle Scout and his charitable work to bolster his plea of innocence. While Greebel’s lawyers did admit that their client engaged in “abhorrent behavior”, they essentially threw themselves at the mercy of the court and importuned the judge to exercise leniency in her sentence by granting their client a no-jail sentence.
Even though the defense team attempted to present Shkreli as the miscreant and “master manipulator” in the case, Judge Matsumoto voiced her disagreement with this assessment and said that she held Greebel “equally responsible” for the criminal acts in the case.
“He’s not reckless, he’s not naive, he’s not inexperienced. He was not led astray by some young, brash CEO,” she said.
Moreover, in addition to time spent in prison, Greebel has been mandated to pay $10,447,979 in restitution to Retrophin and forfeit $116,464.03 in ill-gotten gains to the government, according to the NYP report.
Meanwhile, in the courtroom Greebel’s wife Jodi could be seen sobbing after the sentencing was announced.
The court proceeding last nearly four hours as Greebel’s attorneys could be seen with tears in their eyes as they faced the judge, according to the NYP report. They focused their arguments on how their client’s career had been decimated, along with the retraction of his license to practice law, his varied charitable endeavors and the fact that he was a loving family man – totally dedicated to his wife and three children.
Alixandra Smith, a prosecutor in the case strenuously objected to the defense team’s posture that the loss of Greebel’s law license was painful enough to warrant a no-jail sentence. She told the court: “There should be no special justice system for attorneys.”
Smith stated that, “There’s a lack of responsibility. The way it’s been characterized is that Mr. Shkreli was a bad egg, a bad person, and Greebel had bad luck.”
“He has gone even farther and characterized himself as a victim, saying the largest losses were suffered by him himself,” she added.
Shkreli, who was sentenced to seven years imprisonment in March, is biding his time at the Federal Correctional Institution of Fort Dix, NJ.
Greebel will surrender to the Bureau of Prisons on an undetermined date.