U.S v. Gupta Jury Set, I-Banker to Buffett and Goldman Director on Tap

Credit: World Economic Forum

Who knows what colors the proclivities of a man like Rajat Gupta, the former McKinsey & Co. chief executive standing trial for passing stock tips to Galleon Group manager Raj Rajaratnam. The son of an Indian journalist, possessor of Harvard MBA, once a hired gun in Helsinki and a sometimes dude rancher, we’re ill-equipped to argue why Gupta would favor a registered nurse or elementary school teacher, physician’s assistant or beauty consultant to sit among a jury of his peers. But there you have it: Gupta, looking fit after months of work with a personal trainer, helped choose folks meeting those descriptions at the U.S. Southern District courthouse in lower Manhattan today. According to the Times:

“He appeared to play an active role in the jury selection process, consulting with his lawyers on who to strike from the jury pool. Mr. Gupta’s team of four lawyers from Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel were assisted by a jury consultant from Doar Litigation Consulting. In addition, a staff members at Kramer Levin’s Midtown Manhattan offices had a real-time feed of the trial transcript and were researching the potential jurors’ names as they were called out.”

The prosecution objected to Gupta’s use of outside-the-courtroom resources for jury selection, according to the Times, but Judge Jed Rakoff allowed the extra help. Jury selected and seated, opening remarks got underway; Byron Trott, Warren Buffett’s favorite investment banker, and Goldman Sachs director William George are among those expected to testify this week.