Martin Shkreli's defense attorney objected to a prosecution request that the "pharma bro" be gagged during his ongoing securities fraud trial, and blamed reporters for baiting his emotionally fragile client into publicly blasting prosecutors, witnesses and the press.
Shkreli's "comments are clearly not designed" to affect the "integrity of the judicial process," of the trial in Brooklyn, New York, federal court, wrote his lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, to Judge Kiyo Matsumoto on Monday night.
"Rather his comments are the somewhat natural, though unfortunate, consequence of a young man with a demonstrated history of significant anxiety being at the center of a supremely difficult time in his life," Brafman wrote.
Brafman also said, "In fairness to Mr. Shkreli, the Court should be aware that certain representatives of the press have gone out of their way to try to 'bait' Mr. Shkreli into making public statements that we all have worked very hard to avoid."
In fact, Shkreli last Friday walked, uninvited, into a courtroom that reporters use to monitor a video and audio feed from his trial's courtroom, and began speaking to journalists freely. Shkreli answered questions from the reporters, and also asked them questions during an exchange that featured him making scathing comments about the prosecution, commenting on the evidence against him, and criticizing some of their coverage of the case.
Shkreli only stopped talking when Brafman poked his head into the room and asked him to step outside.