NEW YORK, July 10 The email that gave former
Goldman Sachs Group Inc vice president Fabrice Tourre his
"fabulous Fab" nickname can be introduced at his upcoming
securities fraud trial, a federal judge tentatively ruled on
U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan overruled
an objection from Tourre's lawyers that the email, which was a
personal note sent to his girlfriend, was irrelevant to the
case. In a written order, Forrest said the ruling was
preliminary and could still change in the future.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has charged
Tourre with misleading investors about a 2007 mortgage
securities investment called Abacus 2007-AC1 that regulators
said was designed to fail. The agency contends Tourre failed to
disclose that the hedge fund run by billionaire John Paulson
helped select the mortgages underlying the Abacus investment and
then bet on it to fail.
Goldman paid $550 million to settle the allegations but did
not admit or deny any wrongdoing. Tourre, who denies any
wrongdoing, is scheduled to go on trial on Monday.
Tourre sent the email on January 23, 2007, to his girlfriend
at the time, Marine Serres, a Goldman Sachs co-worker stationed
"The whole building is about to collapse anytime now," he
wrote in French, referring to financial markets. "Only potential
survivor, the fabulous Fab ... Standing in the middle of all
these complex, highly leveraged, exotic trades he created
without necessarily understanding all of the implications of
Media outlets quickly pounced on the nickname after the
email became public.
Tourre's lawyers argued on Tuesday that Serres played no
role in the creation of Abacus 2007-AC1. The SEC countered that
the email demonstrated Tourre's state of mind regarding the
A spokesman for Tourre declined to comment on Forrest's
ruling on Wednesday.
The case is SEC v. Tourre, U.S. District Court, Southern
District of New York, No. 10-03229.