The sky was turning from crimson to blue as the neon lit
Madison Square radiated like a fairyland.
The streets were packed with people and cars as the traffic slowly crawled.
Sameer looked out of his 60th floor apartment on 23 Street in New York City. It was an
opulent house with three huge bedrooms and décor befitting a prince with the
best Italian marble floors, the Iranian carpets and the Belgian glass adoring
the small bar. He walked over to the bar and made a drink of dry gin and
martini, to sooth his parched throat and unsteady nerves. He had just returned
from the court hearing from the Eastern District Court at Brooklyn.
It had been an intense day with long hours of questioning and cross examination.
The judge William Hayes Jr had reserved the judgment on the next Monday at 11
A series of thoughts floated past like clouds through his overworked mind. He was a pampered child being the only son of a senior government official with two other siblings his sisters elder to him by three years and one year respectively. He did his initial schooling at a prestigious public school in Nainital. A brilliant student and a fast learner he qualified for admission in the country’s most prestigious engineering institution in
Kanpur. He continued to excel in studies and
won a scholarship in a top Ivy League institution in USA. There was no looking back
thereafter! He was recommended by his professor to one of the top Consultancy
firms which was advisor to most of the Fortune 500 companies. He had met Shiela
an Indian girl pursuing her studies in the Law school next to the institution
where Sameer was pursuing his studies. Three years later they were married. Now,
they were proud parents of a boy who was pursuing engineering and a daughter
due to finish her elementary school the
Sameer made rapid strides and in a decade rose to become the Vice President. His forte was stocks and derivatives and ‘hedge funds’. The volume of business grew manifold across the hitherto unexplored geographical terrains in the years following globalization of world economy during mid 1980s and 1990s.
Sameer came across Jay an Investment banker who worked with one of the top investment banks. Jay had the privilege to work on the other side of the ‘Chinese Wall’ a barrier which separates the investment decisions from insider information of the company to avoid the conflict of interests. Jay was a bachelor and had the gift of gab, besides being a thorough professional. During mid 2005, ‘ Wiremesh’ a mobile telecommunications company which was growing fast wanted to expand the business for the manufacture of new products to add to the existing portfolio and retained the business consultancy company of Sameer and Jay’s investment bank as advisors. During the strategy meetings of a new product, the two met and soon became friends. After a few meetings, Jay suggested to Sameer that they consider more opportunities for their benefit. Jay called over Felix Stowe, the owner of ‘Barnes Stock Trading Co’ to see if he was interested in doing business with them.
In the next few meetings they decided to let the company do trading in the new shares of ‘Wiremesh’ and worked on the formula to share the profit. Jenny who worked with Jay as his co ordinator observed a change in Jay’s behavior and engaged with long calls behind the closed door. She was also one of the employees entrusted with reporting any unusual activities directly to the senior management. The management hired a private detective agency to follow Jay and report if they observed anything unusual.
One day, it happened! Rodrigues from the detective agency tapped the call from Jay to Felix. They were discussing the base price of a stock at which a new issue was planned. He reported the matter to the bank and they in turn tipped Federal authorities.
The new equity issue appeared on the stock exchange three weeks later and was oversubscribed . A major chunk of investment was funded by Sameer and Jay through the front of Felix. After, a lapse of time the firm allotments were made and the share had already appreciated by $5 per share. The investors, Jay, Sameer and Felix made huge returns and decided to celebrate the event at a private party in a suite of Hotel Waldorf Astoria !
The party was in full swing when the FBI team swooped on the suite with the arrest warrants of all three of them! The gentle knock on the door shook the earth below the three investment genius and FBI team asked them to accompany them to the head office. In a matter of few hours the news was abuzz with the media speculation on the reasons of taking away of the top three investment wizards!
The lengthy court proceedings followed while each one of the accused was let out on a personal surety running into half a million dollars.
In the earlier week Jay was indicted for having committed breach of trust and was sentenced to ten years in prison. Felix too was awarded a sentence of 5 years but the judgment in case of Sameer was reserved!
Shiela, who had just returned from shopping, rang the bell after using the access card at the main gate and the lift. She was horrified to hear the sound of a gunshot from the room! A crimson color was spreading on the floor as a cherished magical ‘American ‘ dream came to an end!
PS- Image Kind Courtesy Google