'Pharma Bro' Shkreli set to be sentenced for defrauding investors


Brafman also wrote to Matsumoto that the $7.3 million forfeiture judgment against him on top of a maximum sentence of 15 years was "far too excessive a punishment, The NY Post reported".

Martin Shkreli, seen here after being convicted of defrauding investors in two hedge funds and in Retrophin Inc. on August 4, was sentenced Friday to seven years in prison by U.S. District Judge Kiyo Matsumoto.

Shkreli first came to incur the world's ire, and earned that derogatory "Pharma Bro" nickname, in 2015 when, as head of Turing Pharmaceuticals, he raised the cost of the drug Daraprim, used to treat parasitic infections in HIV patients, from $13.50-per-pill to $750-per-pill and showed little remorse for it.

Prosecutors have already moved to seize $7.4m of Shkreli's assets, including the only existing copy of an album by U.S. hip hop group the Wu-Tang Clan, Once Upon A Shaolin, for which he reportedly paid $2m at auction in 2015.

Shkreli cried as he told the judge that he made many mistakes and he apologized to investors.

Still, Shkreli leaves a long trail of bad karma and angry people - including his own lawyer - in his wake that aren't sad to see him to go to prison for fraud. In fact, Matsumoto sent him back to jail for the stunt that Shkreli later claimed was a joke.

The judge said the property would not be seized until Shkreli had a chance to appeal.

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Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacquelyn Kasulis said Friday that the judge must also consider the history and characteristics of the defendant. It may be the most famous album ever kept in the possession of just one person. "I took down Martin Shkreli".

And he was convicted of conspiracy to commit securities fraud for manipulating stock shares of Retrophin, a pharmaceutical company he created. In trying to generate sympathy for his client, his lawyer even reportedly said while he often wants to hug him, he sometimes wants to "punch him in the face" too.

After the hearing, he tweeted the lawmakers were "imbeciles". And she noted that Shkreli's family and friends "state, nearly universally, that he is kind and misunderstood" and willing to help others in need. A later offer to pay $5,000 for a strand of Hillary Clinton's hair - follicle included - after his conviction when he was out on bail, did nothing to rehabilitate his image.

She said it was clear he is a "tremendously gifted individual who has the capacity for kindness".

The defence had asked the judge to consider the letters in its case for leniency, including professionals he worked with who vouched for his credentials as a self-made contributor to pharmaceutical advances. One woman described how she became an avid follower of Shkreli's social media commentary about science, thepharmaceutical industry, but mostly, about himself.

Another supporter said Shkreli's soft side was demonstrated when he adopted a cat from a shelter - named Trashy - that became a fixture on his live streams.