Hathaway's Ex Considers Copping Plea

High-living Follieri weighs deal with feds on fraud charges
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Sep 9, 2008 10:31 AM CDT
Actress Anne Hathaway arrives with her then-boyfriend Raffaello Follieri for the 80th Academy Awards at the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles, Sunday, Feb. 24, 2008.    (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta)
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(Newser) – Italian entrepreneur Raffaello Follieri may plead guilty as soon as today to fraud and money-laundering, the Wall Street Journal reports. Anne Hathaway's ex could still opt for a trial. He faces federal charges that carry a sentence of up to 5 years, even with the plea deal, but the government's case is hardly airtight: the main victim of his scam, celebrity billionaire Ron Burkle, has already settled his civil suit against Follieri.

Follieri met Burkle through ties to Bill Clinton and used his apparent links with the Vatican to arrange a deal that fell apart amid accusations that the 30-year-old man-about-town was funding his jet-setting with money Burkle’s company had invested.