Former beauty queen turned hedge funder Danielle Chiesi has a new role now, prisoner.
Yesterday she was handed a 30 month jail sentence by a federal judge in Manhattan for “trafficking inside information through a web of corporate players and Wall Street traders,” including passing information over to former Galleon co-founder Raj Rajaratnam, who was convicted of insider trading in May.
Chiesi, who got a thrill from “pumping insiders for information and snaring secret tidbits about companies,” was one of many players in the government’s massive insider trading probe, which began in 2009. Since the start of the investigation, 49 people have been charged and 46 have been convicted. In January Chiesi pleaded guilty to three counts of conspiracy to commit securities fraud, in which she admitted that she leaked information about IBM, Advanced Micro Devices and Sun Microsystems for money and earning her hedge fund $1.7 million.
Prosecutors were seeking 46 months but Chiesi’s attorney asked for leniency blaming her actions on her tumultuous love affair with her former boss Mark Kurland, a trader at New Castle Partners. Kurland previously pleaded guilty in this case, and is currently serving his 27 month sentence.
Besides her 30 month sentence, Chiesi is also required to two years of supervised release, 250 hours of community service, a $25,000 fine and mandatory mental health and alcohol treatment. She also reached an agreement with the Securities and Exchange Commission to pay back $540,000.
After leaving the courtroom yesterday Chiesi smiled and posed for the cameras and approached federal prosecutors and FBI agents telling them, “if you’re ever going to knock on my door then do it in the afternoon.”
Janelle Howell is the Editor and a contributing writer for CompliancEX and a freelance writer based in New York.