Page last updated at 19:07 GMT, Thursday, 8 April 2010 20:07 UK

Former Polaroid owner Tom Petters jailed for 50 years

Tom Petters
Mr Petters' Petters Worldwide Group once owned Polaroid

US businessman Tom Petters has been sentenced by a federal judge to 50 years in prison for his role in a $3.7bn (£2.4bn) fraud.

The 52-year-old former owner of Polaroid was found guilty on multiple counts of fraud and money-laundering last December.

The case involved a so-called Ponzi scheme, the same fraud that Bernard Madoff was convicted of.

Mr Madoff was jailed for 150 years last summer for his role in a $65bn scheme.

"This was a massive fraud," said US District Judge Richard Kyle.

"Tom Petters was at the front and centre of every stage. [He] was captain of the ship. [The fraud] would not have happened without his direction."

A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment that pays out to existing investors money paid in by new investors, rather than real profits.

It is named after Charles Ponzi, who notoriously used the technique in the US in the 1920s.



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Madoff's aide arrested for fraud
25 Feb 10 |  Business
Fraudster Madoff gets 150 years
29 Jun 09 |  Business
Polaroid in bankruptcy protection
19 Dec 08 |  Business


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific