A U.S. federal judge on Wednesday imposed a harsher-than-required sentence of 18 months in prison on Frank Quattrone, a leading technology investment banker of the 1990s who was convicted of obstruction of justice in May.
In a federal district courtroom in New York City, Judge Richard Owen also sentenced Quattrone to two years’ probation and fined him $90,000.
Quattrone, 48, is the most prominent Wall Street figure to be sentenced to prison since Michael Milken received a 10-year sentence in 1990.
Quattrone was found guilty after investigators began looking into his former employer, Credit Suisse First Boston, and how hot stock offerings were doled out to investors.
Quattrone was accused of trying to Impede the investigations when he endorsed a colleague’s e-mail message in December 2000 urging his staff of bankers at Credit Suisse First Boston to ‘‘clean up those files.’’
Prosecutors had sought a harsher sentence than the 10 to 16 months in prison that federal sentencing guidelines call for, arguing that Quat trone had lied at his trial.
Owen agreed, saying it was ‘‘crystal clear’’ that Quattrone’s testimony was ‘‘untruthful,’’ Bloomberg News reported.
Before being sentenced, Quattrone appealed to the judge, ‘‘I humbly ask that you show mercy and compassion for me and my family,’’ The Associated Press and Bloomberg reported. The verdict against Quattrone, which he is appealing, came in a retrial after his first trial ended in a hung jury last fall.
The jury in the second trial found that he did try to hamper criminal and regulatory investigations into the way that Credit Suisse First Boston handled initial stock offerings.
At issue in whether Quattrone perjured himself is what appeared to be a discrepancy in his first-trial testimony, which prosecutors introduced in the retrial as evidence against him.
During the first trial, Quattrone left jurors with the impression that his group of investment bankers had nothing to do with the allocation of shares of hot initial stock offerings.
But later, he was forced to acknowledge that his bankers did have a role in the process, after being presented with scores of e-mail messages that showed their participation.
If Quattrone were sent to prison, he might well go to a minimum-security prison camp, like Lompoc or Atwater in California. Typically, the United States Board of Prisons tries to assign prisoners to installations within 500 miles of their home. Quattrone lives with his wife and daughter near San Francisco.