'Sheriff of Wall Street' Preet Bharara strikes again

By Arun Kumar, New York, Dec 13 : Manhattan's US Attorney Preetinder Singh "Preet" Bharara, dubbed "Sheriff of Wall Street" by Time magazine, has struck again with the arrest of a senior Indian diplomat on charges of visa fraud and exploiting her housekeeper.

But Devyani Khobragade, 39, India's Deputy Consul General in New York, accused of making her babysitter work for peanuts is not the first Indian to be prosecuted by the famous Indian American attorney whose exploits put him on the cover of Time Magazine in 2012. His most famous "victims" in a four-year insider trading crackdown that has won him a record 76 convictions, include India-born former Goldman Sachs director Rajat Gupta and his Sri Lankan hedge fund billionaire friend Raj Rajaratnam.

The Rajaratnam case also brought down former McKinsey & Company senior executives Anil Kumar, Rajiv Goel, a midlevel Intel Capital executive.

Last month, Bharara made former Indian internet analyst Sandeep Aggarwal plead guilty to providing inside information about a pending deal between Microsoft and Yahoo to a portfolio manager at SAC Capital.

Then last week Bharara charged 49 Russian diplomats and their spouses with scamming Medicaid, a government health care programme for low-income families out of $1.5 million over a decade.

The 49 current or former Russian diplomats and their spouses living in New York City were Thursday accused of participating in a widespread fraud scheme to illegally obtain benefits under Medicaid.

No respecter of riches or fame, Harvard-educated Bharara, 45, has vowed to keep up his crusade, saying he has the "greatest job in the world" though he will "walk the earth and get into adventures" whenever he retires.

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at

--IANS (Posted on 13-12-2013)

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