Petters' request for shorter sentence denied

A federal district judge has denied Tom Petters' request for a shorter sentence and condemned the convicted fraudster's request.

"Staring into an abyss of nearly 15,000 days of incarceration, Petters has tried to pull off one final con," U.S. District Judge Richard Kyle wrote in his order issued Thursday.

The once high-profile Petters sought to have his 50-year sentence for running a multi-billion dollar Ponzi scheme reduced to 30 years. He alleged his defense attorneys failed to inform him that prosecutors had offered a plea deal that would cap the sentence at 30 years.

Kyle, though, would have none of it. In blistering language, he blasted Petters' attempt to gain a lighter sentence. Some excerpts:

"[T]he Court concludes that Petters is simply lying in a desperate attempt to save his own skin."

"[I]t would strain logic to the extreme to conclude that well-versed criminal defense lawyers would ignore their long-established ethical obligations and keep Petters out of the loop."

"Petters's testimony [in a hearing on his request] was, in the Court's view, deliberate, measured, and calculated. He seemed to be a man putting on a show, willing to say or do anything - including shedding crocodile tears - to obtain a reduction of the lengthy sentence imposed by this Court. He was also fidgety, cagey, and evasive...."

"Indeed, the only believable portions of his testimony at the hearing were his admissions that he is guilty of the crimes for which he was convicted, lied to thousands of people over more than a decade while orchestrating a massive Ponzi scheme, and then lied repeatedly to this Court at trial while under oath."

"Petters's last-ditch attempt to escape just punishment for his crimes does not hold Water.... He is entitled to neither relief nor sympathy from this Court."

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