NEW YORK -- High-powered technology banker Frank Quattrone was granted a new trial yesterday when a federal appeals court tossed out his conviction on charges he obstructed a government probe of stock offerings at the height of the dot-com boom.
The Second US Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan said the evidence was sufficient to sustain a conviction but that the May 2004 verdict must be thrown out because the jury was improperly instructed on how to interpret the law.
It also ordered the case reassigned to another judge.
Quattrone was sentenced to 18 months in prison after he was convicted of obstruction-of-justice charges related to a federal investigation of initial public offerings of stock. An earlier trial ended in a mistrial when a jury deadlocked.
Quattrone, 50, has been allowed to remain free while appealing his conviction.
Quattrone was one of the biggest names on Wall Street during the 1990s Internet stock boom, supervising 400 technology investment bankers from the Palo Alto, Calif., offices of Credit Suisse First Boston Corp.
The trial of Quattrone focused on what he knew and did after the National Association of Securities Dealers in May 2000 began investigating CSFB's underwriting of initial public offerings. The NASD has since barred Quattrone from the securities industry for life.