Pharma Jerk Martin Shkreli Is Going to Prison, But Not for the Thing Everyone Wanted Him to Be Punished For
Martin Shkreli was sentenced today to serve seven years in prison. But while most of us would like to see the pharma-goblin serve time for his exploitation of the pharmaceutical industry, his conviction has nothing to do with exorbitantly and cruelly hiking up the prices of life-saving medications. (Nor does it have to do with his harassment of Lauren Duca, his hoarding of rare Wu-Tang albums, or his call for the physical assault of Hillary Clinton.)
No, instead, the crime Shkreli has been convicted of is defrauding investors on two different hedge funds, as well as for attempting to manipulate the stock price of his pharmaceutical company, Retrophin. So while most are happy to see this literal monster see some consequences, it would be a lot more satisfying if they were directly tied to his most heinous crimes.
Martin Shkreli is not going to prison for raising the price of an AIDS drug by 5,000%. But he should.
— Touré (@Toure) March 9, 2018
Martin Shkreli: *raises the price of a lifesaving AIDS drug by 5,000 percent*
Martin Shkreli: *lies to investors*
*jail for 7 years*
— Denizcan James (@MrFilmkritik) March 9, 2018
America in a nutshell:
*Martin Shkreli price gouges HIV+ patients, putting lives at risk*
That sucks but, hey, capitalism amirite? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
*Martin Shkreli defrauds rich investors*
LOCK HIM UP FOR SEVEN YEARS
— Ally Maynard (@missmayn) March 9, 2018
It seems unlikely that Shkreli’s reputation as a goblin in an ill-fitting human suit didn’t play a role in his conviction. After all, if you remember, he had a hell of a time finding impartial jurors.
Never forget how funny the transcripts from Martin Shkreli’s jury selection were pic.twitter.com/G6whQfG2Jw
— Nate (@BarstoolNate) March 9, 2018
Shkreli’s attorneys obviously knew this, and they argued that “he shouldn’t be sentenced simply for being Martin Shkreli.” (His attorney also said that sometimes he wants to “punch him in the face.”) But the prosecutor made the case that his behavior indicates a pattern of “reprehensible conduct towards members of the public” that makes it pretty clear he “is likely to commit similar crimes in the future.”
So while Martin Shkreli’s undeniable Shkreliness probably played a role in his seven-year sentencing, it’s still upsetting that he wasn’t made to directly pay for his exploitation of those in need of life-saving medications.
I try to be a good person and seek justice and not be guided by anger or revenge or the desire to see someone – anyone – be hurt. But there is a dark side of me, and that side just spent ten minutes trying to find video of Martin Shkreli crying as he was being sentenced.
— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) March 9, 2018
(image: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
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