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Martin Shkreli Might Go to Prison for Way Longer Than We Thought

A federal judge decided Pharmabro's crimes caused a loss of $10.4 million. Here's what that means.
Left Image: Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images. Right Image: Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

When Martin Shkreli was convicted of fraud back in August 2017, it was far from certain he'd spend much time behind bars. Sure, a federal jury agreed he lied to hedge fund investors and cooked the books to pay some of them back from the coffers of a drug company he founded. But Shkreli's entire defense was predicated on the fact that, while he might have misled people, none of them ultimately lost money. And the general rule of thumb in federal fraud cases is that sentencing is principally determined by the what's called the "loss amount" of the crime in question.


But on Monday afternoon, Judge Kiyo Matsumoto determined the loss amount in Shkreli's case was $10.4 million. According to federal guidelines, that could mean a decade or more in prison for a man who became infamous in 2015 for jacking up the price of a lifesaving drug more than 5,000 percent. Dubbed the Pharmabro, he also earned the moniker "most hated man in America" for pulling stunts like buying a one-of-a-kind Wu-Tang Clan album and threatening to put it on top of a mountain. Although none of what he will almost certainly go to prison for has to do with all that trolling, his high profile—coupled with the fact that did not seem to show much (if any) remorse during trial—could influence sentencing.

Shkreli's former lawyer, Evan Greebel, also faces up to 20 years in prison and is himself awaiting sentencing. The Pharmabro, meanwhile, has been in a Brooklyn federal jail since September, when he had his bond revoked for offering a bounty on a lock of Hillary Clinton's hair. He's reportedly not very popular in the Metropolitan Detention Center, and has advised people to "avoid" jail if possible. Although his access to social media has been restricted, the 34-year-old is reportedly now bearded and buff. He's set for sentencing on March 9.

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