SAN FRANCISCO — The good news for the U.S. attorney’s office is the judges hearing the Gregory Reyes appeal didn’t harp on prosecutorial misconduct. The bad news may be the judges had another argument to sink their teeth into.

The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals today heard oral arguments in the government’s marquee stock option backdating case against Reyes, the ex-Brocade executive who twice has been convicted. After his first trial, the court threw out his conviction because of prosecutorial misconduct. This time, his attorney, Seth Waxman, the former U.S. solicitor general who got Reyes’ first conviction overturned, focused arguments on the claim that prosecutors didn’t prove materiality. He argued that the government didn’t prove that financial information supposedly concealed in reporting documents would have been material to investors.

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