Lawyers seek Rwanda work sentence for insider Gupta

Lawyers for Rajat Gupta, the former McKinsey & Co chief and Goldman Sachs board member whose smooth ascent to the pinnacle of corporate America was matched only by his precipitous fall after being convicted of leaking insider information earlier this year, have made an unusual plea for leniency as he prepares to hear his sentence from a Manhattan judge.

Prosecutors have asked Judge Jed Rakoff to consider a sentence of eight to ten years after Mr Gupta, pictured, was found guilty of leaking confidential details to the hedge fund manager Raj Rajaratnam, himself convicted last year and sentenced to 11 years behind bars. But ahead of the ruling from Judge Rakoff next week, Gupta's defence team has pleaded for a more lenient sentence of probation and community service. Unusually, among the options they propose is a stint working in Rwanda.

"We set forth a less orthodox but innovative proposal pursuant to which Mr Gupta, under the direction and the supervision of the government of Rwanda, along with Care USA, a leading humanitarian and development organisation with operations in Rwanda, would live and work with government officials in rural districts there, helping to implement the country's initiative to improve delivery of health care (with a particular focus on HIV/AIDS and malaria) and agricultural development," they said. The judge has also received letters asking him to show fairness in sentencing Gupta from the likes of Microsoft's Bill Gates and the former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan.