Allen Stanford found guilty of fraud
If it weren't for Bernie Madoff, Allen Stanford would have been a household name.
As it stands now, he might strike some as small potatoes for his $7 billion Ponzi scheme, which pales next to Madoff's fraud. But we should not lose appreciation for the magnitude of Stanford's crimes, for which a jury has found him guilty on 13 of 14 counts. The outcome was never certain, until it was announced.
After a five-week trial, the jury deliberated for four days amid reports that it was deadlocked. Many thought a hung jury was inevitable. But the judge asked the jury to keep deliberating.
Stanford now faces the possibility that he will spend the rest of his life in jail. The trial itself featured Stanford's one-time CFO, who turned on him and emerged as the government's top witness. The route to prison has been arduous for Stanford, a bon vivant until his fraud, which was built around his bank in Antigua, imploded on him.
In prison, he was severely beaten and suffered brain damage. He later became addicted to his medication, and his lawyers argued that he was no longer fit to stand trial. That delayed his trial by perhaps a year. In any case, this was a brazen fraud that would likely have been a bigger scandal were it not for the unfolding Madoff scandal.
- here's a Houston Chronicle item