By Andrew Longstreth
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A federal U.S. judge on Thursday denied
a request for a new trial made by three former UBS AG
bankers who were convicted of rigging bids to invest municipal
A jury in August 2012 convicted Gary Heinz, Peter Ghavami
and Michael Welty, of defrauding municipal bond issuers, the
U.S. Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service.
Ghavami was also convicted of wire fraud.
Last July, Ghavami, who left UBS in 2007 as global head of
commodities, was sentenced to 18 months in prison. Heinz, a
former bank vice president, received 27 months and Welty, a
former vice president, received 16 months.
In seeking a new trial, a lawyer for Welty argued that the
U.S. government failed to turn over evidence that could have
changed the outcome of the case. Heinz and Ghavami joined the
In her opinion, U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood of Manhattan
disagreed. She found that the government had turned over to the
defense the equivalent of 19.5 million records prior to the
After the trial, the government discovered that due to the
fault of a vendor, it had not reviewed an additional 400,000
documents, according to Wood. After handing those documents over
to the defendants, Welty claimed that an email could have helped
But Wood wrote that "even if it had been disclosed before
trial, there is no reason to believe that it would have had any
impact on the verdict."
Wood also denied a request by Welty and Heinz to be released
from prison pending their appeal.
Charles Stillman, an attorney for Ghavami, declined to
Lawyers for Welty and Heinz did not immediately return
messages seeking comment.
The case is U.S. v. Ghavami et al, U.S. District Court,
Southern District of New York, No. 10-cr-01217.