|By Michael P. Mayko, Connecticut Post, Bridgeport|
The high-performance Farnbacher Loles Porsche racing operation — lost to bankruptcy.
And Gregory Loles, the 55-year-old, self-proclaimed financial whiz who masterminded all this — locked up for 25 years, only to be handed a
"You are the most sinister defendant I have ever sentenced for this category of crime," U.S. District Judge
What Loles did was spend their money on a lavish lifestyle that included adding on to the
"He lived quite well for 10 years on other people's money," Assistant U.S. Attorney
And he tore apart a close-knit Greek community.
"Individuals stopped going to St. Barbara," McGarry said. "They were embarrassed, humiliated. He crushed their spirits, ruined their lives."
"The psychological and financial loss rained down on our community is incalculable," added
He said after five years of dealing with this, Wednesday was a day the St. Barbara community looked forward to as a way of "closing this chapter."
For nearly a decade, beginning in 2001, Loles, who graduated from
"He cultivated friendships and groups," said Solomon, one of the victims who consulted Loles in the hopes of building a scholarship fund at his university. "He looked for soft spots and assessed weaknesses."
Sometimes those soft spots were terminally ill acquaintances hoping to leave money for their children or grandchildren. One was a woman whose husband recently died.
McGarry said Loles not only got his hands on the proceeds of the man's insurance policy, but also convinced the widow to take out a second mortgage and turn the money over to him.
"He looked people in the face, held their hands in hospitals, sat with them in their kitchens … and said 'don't worry, your money is safe,' " the prosecutor said. "He got the dollars. All the dollars. He got every single dollar they had."
Loles told them he was investing in arbitrage bonds paying a safe 7.75 percent and issued by such stalwart companies as
"This went on for years, and years and years," McGarry said. "Accordingly, I think he should be incarcerated for years and years and years."
"As a taxpayer, I don't want to spend
Donovan suggested a sentence of no more than five or 10 years in prison. Already, Loles has spent the past four years behind bars, being detained without bond.
Loles, a graying, solidly built 6-footer, stood up, turned around and addressed the victims who attended his sentencing. Looking directly at them, calling some by name, he professed love for them before begging for forgiveness while constantly pausing to fight back tears. He asked two to come and visit him in
"I know a lot of you have love for me," he said. "I hope one day you can forgive me."
He told them, "There were no words to explain what happened," but said he hoped his acts "going forward will show it doesn't end today. I will do everything in my power to try to pay you back."
He talked about the importance of being able to confess his sins to a Greek Orthodox priest at the Wyatt detention center in
"It was wonderful," he said. "I feel I'm OK with God. I confessed and repented."
And "then you came in here Monday afternoon and committed perjury," Thompson said.
The judge referred to Loles' testimony Monday that a
"The defendant's own words and documentary evidence in front of me are sufficient to prove he committed perjury in multiple ways," Thompson said.
Meanwhile, Donovan said he intends to appeal the sentence imposed.
(c)2014 the Connecticut Post (Bridgeport, Conn.)
Visit the Connecticut Post (Bridgeport, Conn.) at www.ctpost.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services
|Source:||McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|