$400M Ponzi Lawyer Gets 20 Years

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 14, 2009 1:42 AM CDT
Marc Dreier arrives at Manhattan federal court in New York in May, when he pleaded guilty to all charges against him.   (AP Photo/ Louis Lanzano, file)
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(Newser) – A high-flying New York lawyer who orchestrated a Ponzi scheme to fund his lavish lifestyle has been sentenced to 20 years in jail, the New York Times reports. Marc Dreier pleaded guilty to charges including conspiracy and securities fraud relating to the scam, which bilked hedge funds and other investors of some $400 million. Prosecutors had asked for a sentence of 145 years, just 5 years short of the 150 years Bernard Madoff was slapped with.

"Mr. Dreier is not going to get much sympathy from this court,” the judge said. "But he is not Mr. Madoff from any analysis, and that’s why I can’t understand why the government is asking for 145 years.”