Dechert Secures Leniency for London-Based Trader Navinder Singh Sarao

January 28, 2020

Dechert is representing London-based trader Navinder Singh Sarao in relation to his prosecution by the United States Department of Justice (DOJ). Mr. Sarao initially faced charges carrying more than 100 years of jail time in connection with his alleged role in the 2010 “flash crash,” a trillion dollar market event in which the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged more than 600 points in five minutes. 

On January 28, 2020, Chicago-based U.S. federal district court judge Virginia Kendall sentenced Mr. Sarao to “time served,” with a condition of release being one year of home confinement, meaning he will serve no prison time beyond the four months he spent in UK prison in 2015 prior to his release on bail. Mr. Sarao previously pleaded guilty to wire fraud and “spoofing” for placing orders intended to affect prices — rather than trade — in the S&P 500 E-mini futures market.

Mr. Sarao’s lawyer, Dechert partner Roger Burlingame, said, “We are grateful to the judge for her decision and the government for its recommendation. Nav has been living under the threat of a very long sentence for almost five years. He is overjoyed to put this behind him, go home, and move on with his life.”

Mr. Burlingame led Mr. Sarao’s defense strategy, including advising him on his co-operation with the U.S. authorities and in his claims for leniency. “The context of this prosecution made it a very special and challenging case. It is a wonderful outcome and on behalf of Mr. Sarao, I am eternally grateful to the court and the government for recognizing Mr. Sarao’s unique circumstances and courageously doing the right thing,” Mr. Burlingame added.

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