Crime: The Man Who Fooled Everybody

"You have caused terrific loss to many of your fellow Americans," said the judge. The defendant, Anthony ("Tino") De Angelis, folded his hands over his paunch and shifted nervously from foot to foot. He had pleaded guilty to four federal counts of fraud and conspiracy, and last week in a Newark courtroom, the time had come for sentencing.

Federal Judge Reynier J. Wortendyke sentenced De Angelis to ten years in prison—but with a surprising twist. Invoking a new section of the federal criminal code, he turned De Angelis over to the personal...

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