Spitzer Will Retry Sihpol in Mutual Fund Case

The former Bank of America broker still faces four counts.
Publish date:

Updated from 11:35 a.m. EDT


Bank of America

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broker Theodore Sihpol's legal troubles aren't over.

In a somewhat surprising move, New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer has decided to retry Sihpol on four criminal charges that a jury could not reach a verdict on last month.

Most legal observers had believed Sihpol was in the clear, after a jury acquitted him June 9 on 29 counts of larceny, falsifying business records and other offenses related to mutual fund trading. The verdict was a major blow to Spitzer, given that Sihpol was the first person in the two-year-old investigation to face trial on criminal charges.

The jury rendered its verdict after a six-week trial, during which Spitzer's office tried to prove that Sihpol personally profited by engaging in late trading of mutual fund shares for the now-infamous Canary Capital Partners hedge fund.

A Spitzer spokesman had no comment on the decision to retry the 37-year-old former broker. Sihpol's attorney, Paul Schectman, expressed disappointment at the decision to retry his client. "We reached an impasse and as of this moment we're going to trial.''

A retrial is scheduled for Aug. 22. The remaining charges include falsifying business records and scheming to defraud.

But in an interview conducted after the trial, several jurors said they voted to acquit Sihpol because he was the only person from Bank of America or Canary to be criminally charged in the matter. Sihpol's lawyer introduced evidence that a number of other people at the bank, including several of Sihpol's supervisors, were aware of his activities.

Spitzer's decision to retry Sihpol comes as federal prosecutors in Massachusetts are nearing a decision on whether to indict three former

Prudential Financial

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brokers for their role in the mutual fund scandal. Michael Sullivan, the U.S. attorney in Massachusetts, is expected to make a decision on whether to indict Martin Druffner, Skifter Ajro and Justin Ficken by Aug. 2.