Ex-Jefferies & Co. trader Jesse Litvak’s former customers told a jury during his fraud trial in Connecticut that lies and misrepresentations are common and part of the give-and-take of bond trading.
Litvak, 39, is on trial in federal court in New Haven, Connecticut, accused of defrauding investors of $2 million by lying on trades of mortgage-backed securities. He’s the only person charged with fraud in connection with an initiative to distribute more than $20 billion from the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), which the U.S. government created during the 2008 credit crisis to help bail out banks.
He faces as many as 20 years in prison if convicted of securities fraud, the most serious count, at his trial before U.S. District Judge Janet C. Hall, which began with jury selection Feb. 3.
Litvak, a native of Denver who graduated from Emory University in Atlanta, was hired by Jefferies in April 2008 and was fired on Dec. 21, 2011, according to his indictment. He previously worked for RBS Greenwich Capital, according to records of the Financial Industry Regulatory Agency.