Nadel Lawyers Seek Five Year Sentence For $162 Million Fraud

Sep 28 2010 | 11:35am ET

Hedge fund fraudster and Ponzi scheme mastermind Arthur Nadel thinks five years in prison is plenty for ripping investors off to the tune of $162 million.

Nadel’s lawyers submitted the surprising sentencing recommendation—his plea deal calls for a sentence of at least 12 years and 7 months—in light of his poor health and the relatively honest motivations for his fraud. It also means that Nadel, who has spend most of the last two years in jail after his arrest last year, could be out of prison in as little as three-and-a-half years, if he is credited for time served.

“Mr. Nadel’s conduct, although reprehensible, was not motivated by greed but by his pathological desire for admiration and his inability to face and admit to others that he was a failure,” his lawyers told U.S. District Judge John Koeltl. Prosecutors are expected to demand a harsher sentence for the 77-year-old in their own sentencing memorandum this week.

Certainly, Nadel’s victims are already pushing for that. In a raft of victim impact statements, they urged Koeltl to ensure that Nadel spends the rest of his life in an orange jumpsuit.

Nadel pleaded guilty to 15 counts of securities, wire and mail fraud in February.

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