Telecom scandal update: The Rigas family

With former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio's conviction on insider trading charges (his lawyers are appealing), I was ready to put the era of naughty telecom execs to bed. Alas, I forgot that John and Tim Rigas were still on the loose.

The Rigas boys--John, 82, and Tim, 51--were convicted on a variety of fraud charges way back in 2004, and and sentenced to prison for 15 years and 20 years, respectively. They have been appealing, and free, ever since, until now. Both of them have reported to a low-security prison in North Carolina to carry out their sentences.

I almost feel bad for them. Tim will be an old man when he gets out, and John--well, let's hope he puts his idle time to use staying fit and eating right. I would say the punishment is harsh, but I know several Adelphia shareholders and employees would respond immediately to set me straight. The Rigas boys played the courts to get a few more years freedom, and I wonder now if we can expect the same. Will Joe still be free heading into 2010?

For more about the Rigases:
- read this report in The Wall Street Journal (Sub. req.)