Sihpol Defense Lawyer: No Criminal Intent in Hedge Fund Trades

May 31, 2005 ( - Former Bank of America (BoA) Corp. broker Theodore Sihpol may have helped a hedge fund execute trades after market hours, but he never intended to break the law, his defense lawyer told jurors in Sihpol's ongoing trial.

Defense lawyer Paul Shechtman said in his closing statement in New York state court that Sihpol never covered up his dealings with Canary Capital Partners LLC and that other BoA employees knew that he was handling the hedge fund’s late fund trades, Reuters reported.

“This wasn’t Ted Sihpol’s maneuver – Ted Sihpol’s trick. This was what was going on openly at Bank of America,” Shechtman said, according to the news report.

Prosecutors from New York state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer’s office have charged that Sihpol’s actions were illegal and that they ended up harming ordinary clients who did not get the treatment Sihpol gave to Canary (See  Ex-BoA Broker Sihpol Indicted in Scandal ).

The prosecution was set to give its closing arguments later on Tuesday. Jurors are expected to start deliberating as soon as Wednesday.

If convicted, Sihpol would face up to 30 years in prison. The former broker still faces 33 counts, including seven of grand larceny, four of securities fraud and scheming to defraud, and 22 of falsifying records.