The Anaheim Ducks owner, Irvine's Broadcom Corp. co-founder and UC Irvine Henry Samueli School of Engineering namesake may be prison bound.
Orange County Register reports a federal court today dismissed an appeal by the billionaire, who had sought to overturn a judge's rejection of a plea bargain that would have kept him out of prison. He now faces up to five years in prison at his yet-to-be scheduled sentencing.
In exchange for a June 2008 guilty plea to one count of making a false statement to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Samueli agreed to pay $12 million to the U.S. Treasury and to cooperate with federal prosecutors in their case against other Broadcom executives.
That was also supposed to keep Samueli out of prison, but U.S. District Judge Cormac Carney in Santa Ana rejected the deal last September, saying it was too lenient. Samueli decided not to withdraw his guilty plea while appealing Carney's ruling to the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco. The justices decision today essentially said because the billionaire failed to withdraw his guilty plea, all that is left is sentencing.
Meanwhile, jury selection in the federal prosecution of William J. Ruehle, Broadcom's former chief financial officer, begins Oct. 20. Henry T. Nicholas III, the other Broadcom co-founder, goes to trial in February.
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Neither should expect a picnic: Carney is hearing both cases.