From running a law firm that employed two hundred lawyers to facing life behind bars: Marc Dreier appeared in federal court and pleaded guilty to "money laundering, conspiracy, securities fraud and wire fraud." His admission read in part, "I engineered a scheme to issue and sell fictitious promissory notes purportedly issued by companies in the United States and Canada," and he noted that the scheme took place between 2004 and 2008.
Dreier, who turns 59 today, is accused of swindling investors out of $400 million by selling $700 million in fake promissory notes. The NY Times explains, "He then used the proceeds to maintain a lavish lifestyle, according to the authorities, which included owning a $10 million apartment on the Upper East Side, beachfront properties in the Hamptons, a valuable art collection, expensive cars and an $18 million yacht, documents show." Dreier was caught in Canada last year, as he posed as another lawyer during an attempt to sell notes to a Canadian pension plan. Once he was released, he was arrested by U.S. authorities at Laguardia Airport.
The U.S. Attorney's Office, which claims Dreier used his celebrity-filled parties to tout the promissory notes, believed it was unfair for him to "continue to live rent free in a spectacular apartment bought with his victims' money." Judge Jed Rakoff, who said Dreier "disgraced the honorable profession of law," unhappily allowed Dreier to stay out on his $10 million bail—"We rarely encounter a less appealing beneficiary of bail." But, according to the Post, Dreier's defense lawyer said his client has no money and that Dreier's son is using his bar mitzah money to pay for his dad's food!