The prison sentences of a father-and-son pair of former cable television executives have been reduced by three years after an appeals court dismissed one of the two bank fraud counts for which they were convicted.
U.S. District Judge Leonard Sand reduced the 15-year sentence of 82-year-old Adelphia Communications founder John Rigas to 12 years. His son, Timothy, had his 20-year sentence cut to 17 years. A New York appeals court ruled last year that there was insufficient evidence to support one of the fraud counts but upheld 17 other convictions on charges such as conspiracy, securities fraud and bank fraud.
Sand first sentenced them in 2005 on charges of fraud and conspiracy for hiding $2.3 billion in debt and using $100 million from the company as personal funds. They were later indicted for evading more than $300 million in taxes and pleaded not guilty. The trial in that case is scheduled for October.
Time Warner and Comcast received bankruptcy court approval to purchase the assets of the company for $17.6 billion in 2006. The Rigases' ice hockey team, the Buffalo Sabres, has also been sold.
Adelphia's former auditor, Deloitte & Touche, agreed to a $167.5 million settlement last year (see Judge OKs $167.5M Deloitte Settlement for Adelphia).
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