Qwest's Joe Nacchio Reports to Prison

Former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio reported to the federal prison camp at Schuylkill, PA today to begin serving his six year sentence.

Yesterday, the Tenth Circuit denied his latest request for bail pending the outcome of his Petition for Writ of Certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court.

"The renewed emergency application for release is denied, and we deny the request to stay the surrender date ordered by the district court," the order by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals panel states.

He is still making one more attempt through an appeal to Justice Stephen Breyer. (Update: Justice Breyer has denied his request.)

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    Request to Breyer Denied (none / 0) (#1)
    by scribe on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:22:42 PM EST
    No Justice has granted (none / 0) (#6)
    by Peter G on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:54:08 PM EST
    ... a bail application to anyone in the last 25 years -- since the present federal bail statute went into effect in 1984 -- according to the Gressman, Geller et al Supreme Court Practice treatise, and as confirmed by my conversations with the chief deputy clerk there.  The court of appeals is for all intents and purposes the last stop on that train.

    Inmate 33973-013... (none / 0) (#2)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:41:50 PM EST
    ...for awhile.  

    Insider trading of millions of dollars gets you six years in Club Fed while robbing a bank of a few thousand gets you 20 years in the pen.  

    Doesn't quite seem right.  

    It seems even more off... (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by kdog on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:54:51 PM EST
    when you look at the completely legal thievery going down...yeah I'm talking about TARP.

    Plus factoring in that "insider" trading is the norm amongst Wall St. "insiders"...and only people who piss off the wrong people seem to get pinched for it...Martha Stewart and Joe Nacchio to name two.


    It isn't right (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Peter G on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 01:15:01 PM EST
    In fact, it's also not true.  Under the federal sentencing guidelines, USSG 2B3.1, a first offender bank robbery, with no gun and no physical injury, taking less than $10,000, generates a recommended sentence of 4 years or less (Level 22).  The notion of "Club Fed" is also a myth, based on stories that are at least 20 years old.  It's really a shame how that expression caught on in the public imagination.  Minimum security federal prison ("camp") is no picnic these days, although it is far from what inmates experience in higher security federal and state prisons.  As such places go, however, FPC Schuylkill (pronounced by the locals, "Skoo'-kil," by the way) in Minerville, PA, is not a bad one at all.

    Well, (none / 0) (#14)
    by bocajeff on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 02:19:34 PM EST
    There is a difference between robbery and insider trading. My wife works in a bank and has been robbed three times in 18 years. It scares the heck out of her (and me!) because of the violence that surrounds it. Insider trading is horrific but in a different way as there is no violence associated with it.

    Somehow... (none / 0) (#15)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 02:32:43 PM EST
    ...I don't think that the Qwest/Mountain Bell people who had their lives ripped out from underneath them are going to buy the argument that it was any less violent.  

    And there are thousands upon thousands of them around here.  


    I know several ex-Quest employees (none / 0) (#3)
    by ruffian on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:50:32 PM EST
    probably having a party today.

    I did not like the way the government seemed to play games with his prosecution after he would not play ball on the illegal wiretapping, but that doesn't mean Nacchio is not a crook.

    I attended and live blogged (none / 0) (#4)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:53:10 PM EST
    much of the trial and did not think the Government proved the insider trading charges. There were a lot of valid reasons for him to have sold his stock the way he did. And I don't think the information the Government alleged was material insider information was material. It was a very technical trial and not as simple as "he was a crook."

    I defer to your knowledge on that J (none / 0) (#9)
    by ruffian on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:56:18 PM EST
    And I know being a horrible CEO for your employees is not a crime. But he sure made his money somehow, and it was not by being a good steward of Quest.

    But, you weren't (none / 0) (#16)
    by Bemused on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 03:22:22 PM EST
    on the jury, and the jury rejected the
    "valid reasons" for the stock sales after sitting through the entire trial. I don't believe that the jury's weighing of the evidence is even an issue at this stage.

      As for whether the inside information he had was material, it would appear at first blush to be a a challenge to convince someone that internal forecasts and projections would not be considered by most investors as the type of things upon which they would base dcisions if they had access to them. Moreover, the government did not argue that those were the only types of inside information to which Nacchio had access by virtue of his position. The government asserts that he also had access to the raw data upon which interpretative analyses such as projections and forecasts are based. Nacchio also has the problem that his sales did not comply with the requirements of Rule 10b5-1 and he was also alleged to have backdated the 10b5-1 plan he filed even though he did not make his sales as set forth in it.


    Possibly my msitake on the wiretapping (none / 0) (#5)
    by ruffian on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:53:53 PM EST
    may be getting my telecom companies mixed up!

    No you have it right (none / 0) (#10)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 01:02:20 PM EST
    He tried to make that an issue at trial, the Judge didn't buy it. He was the telecom exec who refused to play ball with the warrantless NSA electronic surveillance. I'm just saying that I don't think retribution for his refusal was the reason for the charges, I think it was the insistence of the Qwest retirees.

    Thanks - that was my first recollection (none / 0) (#11)
    by ruffian on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 01:06:16 PM EST
    His saving grace in my book. I'd be willing to commute his sentence based on standing up to the NSA.

    If you are right, I guess I wish other groups of retirees were that powerful.


    Can't offend the shareholders... (none / 0) (#13)
    by kdog on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 01:15:46 PM EST
    they've convinced the whole country it ain't gambling...quite a feat actually.

    on the wiretap issue (none / 0) (#8)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Apr 14, 2009 at 12:56:06 PM EST
    I really don't think that's why they went after Nacchio. I think it was their response to the public clamoring of the Qwest retirees who lost money (and in many instances, life savings) when the stock tanked after his sales.