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Adelphia founder sentenced to 15 years in jail ­ Business ­ Corporate scandals | NBC News

Adelphia founder gets 15­year term; son gets 20










Rigases were convicted of stealing $100 million in company funds

updated 6/20/2005 7:04:56 PM ET

NEW YORK — John Rigas, who turned a $300 investment a half­ century ago into cable behemoth Adelphia Communications Corp., was sentenced to 15 years in prison Monday for his role in the looting and debt­hiding scandal that pummeled the company into bankruptcy.
Rigas’ son Timothy, 49, who like his father was convicted last year of bank fraud, securities fraud and conspiracy, was sentenced to
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Worse still for investors, the company collapsed into bankruptcy in 2002 after it disclosed a staggering $2.3 billion in off­balance­sheet debt that prosecutors said was deliberately hid by the Rigases.
“Our intentions were good. The results were not,” Timothy Rigas told the judge.
Adelphia, founded by John Rigas in tiny Coudersport, Pa., and the lifeblood of that town for 50 years, now operates under bankruptcy protection in Greenwood Village, Colo.
Sand declined to force the two men to pay restitution, noting the family has already agreed to forfeit more than $1.5 billion to settle regulatory charges. At the most dramatic moment of a hearing that stretched nearly three hours, John Rigas slowly rose from his chair just before being sentenced, shuffled to a lectern and addressed the judge, speaking slowly and softly.
“In my heart and in my conscience, I’ll go to my grave really and truly believing that I did nothing but try to improve the conditions of my employees,” he said.
He said repeatedly he had led a blessed life, and even thanked members of the military “that fought for America and gave their lives because they believed in America and what it stood for.”
“If I did anything wrong, I apologize,” he said.
Just after he was sentenced, the elder Rigas, hunched forward in his seat, held his right hand over his mouth and dabbed at his eyes

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