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Venezuelan Fraudster Gets To Spend Extra 13 Years In U.S.

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Doesn't have to go home... yet.

Francisco Illarramendi ran a hedge fund whose strategy was to steal about $400 million from Venezuela’s national oil company. This is illegal in the United States, and that is a lot of money—even if his lawyers say Illarramendi’s was the first Ponzi scheme in history to turn a profit for investors. And so instead of six months of house arrest before being deported, Illarramendi will be wearing an orange jumpsuit for 13 years before being deported.

"Our wholehearted intention is to appeal the sentence," Seeger said. "While the government has hailed it as the biggest Ponzi scheme in Connecticut's history, it is the only alleged Ponzi scheme in the universe with a surplus…."

According to prosecutors, Illarramendi lied to his investors, bribed Venezuelan officials who helped steer $100 million of PDVSA money to him, and pursued a series of "Hail Mary" transactions to conceal mounting losses.

Venezuelan financier gets 13 years prison in Connecticut fraud [Reuters]


Alen Ištoković [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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