When Scott Rothstein finished his conversation with “G-d” and decided to return from Morocco and face the consequences of his fragile self-esteem and lust for the trappings of wealth, he thought his plan was foolproof.
Rat fast and hard, and then claim you’re a “changed man.”
I understand that this Court must, and I expect it to, sentence me to a significant term of years. I only ask that you deal with me fairly and that based upon the fact that the record now exists, from my decision to return from Morocco and all that I have done since, that I am truly a changed man and that I have sincerely tried to redeem myself, that you consider giving me an opportunity to live at least part of the remainder of my life as a free man with an opportunity to do some good in this world. I will never forgive myself for what I have done nor do I expect anyone else to forgive me. But I will spend the rest of my life doing everything in my power to make right all the harm I have caused and to restore my family’s good name as best as G-d will allow.
And Rothstein stuck to the plan and gave the government its money’s worth .
“While the defendant’s criminal activity in this case can only be described as reprehensible, it is beyond dispute that his post-offense conduct has been extraordinary,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Lawrence D. LaVecchio wrote, referring to Rothstein’s cooperation explaining his fraud and working as an informant in a case related to organized crime.
But the government isn’t the most agreeable of business partners. While Rothstein’s lawyers sought a sentence of 30 years, the government, despite his “extraordinary” cooperation, fixed on 40 years in prison. Did Rothstein think he might receive just a bit more love from the government than 40? You can bank on it.
Cooperation. The magic bullet, the get-out-of-jail free card. If it wasn’t the perfect solution, it was better than the alternative, thought the man staring down a .357 magnum. Everybody says that if you cooperate, if you give the government whatever it wants, you get to sleep in your own bed. Eventually, anyway.
It was surprising that his lawyers offered 30 years. Under the split the difference theory (provided you don’t go too low such that you’ve hit the point of absurdity), the court might be more inclined to find a happy medium between the government’s number and the defense’s. In the best of all worlds, the two are close enough that it doesn’t matter much.
Scott Rothstein was sentenced today to 50 years in prison.
It doesn’t appear that Rothstein’s plan was nearly as foolproof as he thought.
H/T Brian Tannebaum