How Joe Nacchio Is One Step Closer to an Earlier-Than-Expected Release

August 2009

Joe Nacchio, the former Qwest executive convicted on 19 counts of insider trading, could see the six-year prison term he began in April reduced. Federal prosecutors announced yesterday that they won't appeal a ruling last month by the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals concluding that Nacchio's prison sentence was too long and the $52 million penalty too high. The problem, the court ruled, was that officials improperly calculated Nacchio's illegal gains from 2001 stock trades, writes Reuters. The appeals court didn't say what kind of alternative punishment Nacchio should receive, but, as The Denver Post notes, Nacchio's attorneys argued that his sentence should be no more than four years and three months and should forfeit no more than $44.6 million. The anger is seething in the Post's online comments section. One writes: "Mr. Nacchio can afford to fight this case until he gets a ruling more favorable to him, while people with less money languish in jail. As the saying goes, 'all men are created equal; some are just more equal than others.'"

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