Federal sources have confirmed that four people will be charged later this week in connection with the $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme orchestrated by disgraced Fort Lauderdale attorney Scott Rothstein.
The four unidentified people – including two Internet technology specialists who created fake websites – are expected to plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and cooperate with federal authorities.
Scott Rothstein was sentenced to 50 years in federal prison last June for using his Fort Lauderdale law firm – Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler – to run a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme that enriched him with yachts and sports cars while allowing him to make sizable contributions to numerous charities and politicians.
Rothstein had faced up to 100 years behind bars after pleading guilty to two counts of fraud and three counts of conspiracy. The sentence imposed by United States District Judge James Cohn was ten years more than prosecutors requested and 20 years longer than the term Rothstein had hoped to receive as a result of his reportedly extensive cooperation with federal investigators.
Rothstein had cited his assistance to authorities in a plea for leniency and prosecutors still have the option of asking that his sentence be reduced if he continues to help investigators. “I don’t expect your forgiveness,” Rothstein told the court, and said he would do “everything in his power” to help investors recoup their losses and bring others to justice.
The arrests may have an impact on whether Scott Rothstein will ever see freedom in what has amounted to a life sentence for the 48 year-old disbarred attorney.