Ex-Jefferies Managing Director Jesse Litvak, deemed an 'elite' fraudster by prosecutors for being the only person convicted of fraud over a $20bn government bailout program, was sentenced to two years in prison for lying to customers about mortgage-backed securities.
Bloomberg News reports that defence lawyers successfully argued their client deserved less than the decade in prison he faced by saying his fraud was less insidious than a Ponzi scheme or 'boiler room'.
The judge noted that the victims were 'sophisticated investors'. Litvak’s lawyers had asked for a maximum 14-month term.
Litvak, 39, was found guilty of securities fraud and making false statements, as well as fraud connected to the U.S. Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program. His March conviction was the first tied to the Public-Private Investment Program, an initiative that used TARP funds to spur investments in mortgage-backed securities after the 2008 financial crisis.
Litvak must surrender to authorities November 5. His lawyers said he will appeal his conviction.
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