Programmer vs US Govt Legal Defense Fund

Jitesh Thakkar legally immigrated to the United States from India in 1989 at the age of 13 to live the American Dream.  He learned English, graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a Computer Engineering degree, and founded his own small programming business. Now he faces unprecedented criminal charges because his company created software that a client later used to engage in unlawful CME futures trading without his knowledge.

Make no mistake about it—Jitesh is innocent of the charges.  He did not know what the trader would do with the software he created, which had legitimate uses.  But Jitesh now faces hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal bills because he must go to trial to prove his innocence, even though he has no prior criminal record or even any regulatory infractions.

Jitesh is a fighter and has utilized every monetary resource available to retain a prominent law firm to represent him. The case is scheduled to go to trial on April 1, 2019, in U.S. District Court in Chicago. The financial technology industry and small business owners everywhere will be watching intently because this case could set a precedent that would be used against other innocent programmers.

We ask for your support for Jitesh and his family. Should you be so gracious, your anonymous donation will go directly to Jitesh’s legal defense. It is the hope of Jitesh and his family that no one else may find themselves in such a precarious and unfair situation.

If you are unable to donate, we ask you to please send Jitesh, his wife, and two small children your prayers and energy as a father fights to be present for his kids during the most important years of their childhood.

Donations (0)

  • Dan Calugar 
    • $1,000 
    • 5 mos
  • Jin-Ghee Lu 
    • $100 
    • 5 mos
  • Dan Mourning 
    • $100 
    • 5 mos
  • Michael Phillips 
    • $250 
    • 5 mos
  • Vaishali Bhagat 
    • $100 
    • 6 mos

Fundraising team: Friends of Jitesh (4) 

Tayloe Draughon 
Raised $1,537 from 15 donations
Winfield, IL
Jitesh Thakkar 
Michael Burns 
Team member
Raised $550 from 4 donations
Craig Hellman 
Team member
This team raised $4,050 from 24 other donations.
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