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Convicted ‘pharma bro’ Martin Shkreli wants early release to work on coronavirus cure

Lawyers for Shkreli, who is in federal prison, claim he has “devoted countless hours” to researching a cure.

Lawyers for “pharma bro” Martin Shkreli asked a federal judge Wednesday to release him from prison so he can help find a cure for COVID-19, the disease associated with the coronavirus, court records show.

The documents, filed in U.S. District Court in Brooklyn, N.Y., say Shkreli, 37, has “devoted countless hours” to developing a cure for the disease, which has killed nearly 45,000 people in the United States and tens of thousands more around the world.

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Shkreli is serving a seven-year sentence at a federal prison in Allenwood, Pennsylvania, after being convicted in 2017 on securities fraud and conspiracy charges. His lawyers asked in the filing that he be allowed to serve the rest of his term at home with an electronic monitor.

Shkreli, a former biotech CEO and hedge fund manager, had been accused of repeatedly lying about the performance of his funds and raiding his company’s assets to provide returns to investors. He first gained notoriety in 2015 after he raised the price of a lifesaving anti-parasite drug by 5,000 percent.

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