U.S. billionaire financier R. Allen Stanford Thursday was sentenced to 110 years in prison without parole for running a Ponzi scheme through an offshore bank.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. District Judge David Hittner in Houston said the government will appoint an appeals attorney for Stanford, who has pleaded poverty, KTRK-TV, Houston, reported.
Stanford's attorneys had sought a four-year sentence, while prosecutors sought 230 years in prison.
Hittner imposed a $5.9 billion forfeiture order, but those funds are unlikely to be collected. U.S. authorities are trying to recover $330 million worth of overseas assets to return to bilked investors, KTRK said.
A federal jury in March convicted the 61-year-old Texas banker of all but one count of an indictment alleging the $7 billion fraud. He was acquitted of a single wire fraud count alleging he bought Super Bowl tickets for a bank regulator in Antigua.
Prosecutors alleged Stanford and others defrauded investors in certificates of deposit issued by Stanford International Bank in Antigua. Stanford was accused of investing the money in risky real estate assets and his own businesses, as well as to fund his lavish lifestyle.
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