Monday, November 01, 2010

Terre Haute Is Lovely This Time Of Year

Destitution is a matter of perception in the case of Steven Green.

After bilking his investors of millions, he claimed to be destitute and the government had to pay for a lawyer to represent him at trial.

Convicted of wire fraud, the con man from Winnetka, Illinois would normally be incarcerated at the Federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana. The Feds aren't heartless and they try to lock up felons at the facility nearest to home so the family can visit easily. That makes Indiana the best choice for Steven Green.

But Mr. Green would like to jailed in Florida. The weather is so much nicer there, and there's no ghost of Timothy McVeigh flittering along the corridors. Who wants to be locked up in the same place that an American terrorist drew his last breath?

As criminals get no say in the matter, it isn't a question of Mr. Green asking the judge nicely. So he's out to prove that he's actually a Florida resident and the Terre Haute location simply wouldn't do.

After telling some whopping lies to clients who handed over a few million dollars to fund Mr. Green's lavish lifestyle, it's no problem to tell another.

Mr. Green told the Feds that he's a permanent Florida resident, even though he's only just moved to a very plush condo overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. You wouldn't think that eight weeks at the Portofino Island Resort would constitute permanent residency, but the felon believes he can pull one over on the Feds.

After all, he got them to pay for his attorney and he's not so destitute that he can't pay $2,600 per month for his resort home. Unless, of course, he's stealing that as well.

The taxpayer-funded attorney says it's a reasonable request from Mr. Green and he should be locked up in Florida for the next 78 months. It's up to the Prison Bureau to decide if the convict is to be allowed to play them for fools, or call his bluff.

While they're at it, the Federal Bureau of Prisons might want to know how Mr. Green could also afford to hire Federal Prison Consultants Inc. to send off a report from a psychologist that supports the convict's request for a Florida cell.

Where is the money coming from?

That's what the victims of Steven Green's schemes and theft would like to know. They'd like their money back.

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