Bernie Ebbers was, for a while, the pre-Madoff face of white-collar crime. The onetime chief executive of telecommunications firm WorldCom, Ebbers was convicted in 2005 of charges including fraud, conspiracy and filing false financial reports. The Mississippi company, already bleeding after a string of acquisitions, had to file for bankruptcy before reemerging as MCI Inc. and selling itself to Verizon. Revelations related to the $11-billion accounting fraud caused the stock to plunge and investors to lose billions. Ebbers is now serving a 25-year term in Louisiana.
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