Biotech and Pharma

Martin Shkreli nastily berated lawyer, said his attorneys are 'lazy and stupid and paid too much'

Key Points
  • Martin Shkreli is accused of defrauding a group of investors in his hedge funds.
  • He also is charged with looting the drug company he founded to pay back those investors.
  • Shkreli allegedly used sham consulting agreements to justify the payments to some investors.
Martin Shkreli nastily berated lawyer, said his attorneys are 'lazy and stupid and paid too much'

Martin Shkreli apparently is a big fan of the old saying "do as I say, not as I do."

The "pharma bro" Shkreli had a nasty habit of berating his business lawyer, and current criminal case co-defendant Evan Greebel, according to evidence shown jurors Tuesday at Shkreli's securities fraud trial in Brooklyn, New York, federal court.

One email chain in particular between the two men shows Shkreli excoriating Greebel for not promptly sending him a copy of a purportedly sham consulting agreement that Shkreli allegedly was using to pay off a defrauded investor.

Investors in Shkreli's hedge funds have said he stonewalled them for months or more as they sought the return of their money.

"Why can't you do your job? It is terrible," Shkreli wrote to Greebel in March 2013, according to an FBI agent who read a copy of the email aloud to jurors.

When Greebel protested in response that he was just then about to send Shkreli the desired consulting agreement, Shkreli didn't buy it.

"B---s--. How long does it take to edit a consulting agreement I sent you three weeks ago," Shkreli wrote Greebel.

"I am really starting to think you are inept," Shkreli fumed in his email to Greebel.

"Nope, you're done, fenwick's turn," Shkreli wrote in an apparent reference to another law firm when Greebel offered again to send the document promptly.

"No, delete from your system," Shkreli continued.

"You don't do it until I remind you and you embarrass me," Shkreli wrote. "You can't wait three weeks to do my contracts."

Greebel meekly replied: "You are right. I'm sorry, it won't happen again."

In another email to an investor who Shkreli is accused of defrauding, Shkreli wrote, "My lawyers are lazy, and stupid and paid too much."

Shkreli, 34, is charged with defrauding a number of investors at two hedge funds he ran by misleading them about the performance of their investments.

After allegedly losing or transferring most of their money to his new drug company, Retrophin, he then allegedly used Retrophin stock and cash to pay off those investors, prosecutors charge. Shkreli allegedly used sham consulting agreements between Retrophin and some investors to get them their money.

Shkreli, who has pleaded not guilty in the case, is being tried first. Greebel, who has pleaded not guilty to charges that accuse him of helping Shkreli's allegedly fraudulent scheme to pay off investors, is expected to go on trial later this year.

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