Bernard J. Ebbers, the former chief executive of WorldCom Inc., will remain free on bail as the appeal of his March conviction continues.

Ebbers, 63, had been expected to report to prison on Oct. 12 to begin serving a 25-year sentence after being found guilty of securities fraud in March. His attorneys have challenged the judge's instruction to jurors that they could find Ebbers guilty if they believed he suspected a crime was being committed but intentionally looked the other way.  The appeal could take more than a year.

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