Without comment, the U.S. Supreme Court refused on Monday to consider appeals filed by Adelphia Communications founder John Rigas and his son, Timothy Rigas, who have been convicted of corporate fraud triggering the collapse of what had once been the nation’s fifth largest cable network operator. The high court’s action assures that the 83-year-old John Rigas (who is serving a 15-year prison term) and Timothy Rigas—the former chief financial officer of Adelphia who is serving a 20-year term—will fulfill their sentences. Before seeking Chapter 11 protection in 2002, Adelphia experienced rapid growth during the 1990s, when subscribership swelled to 5 million households in 31 states. Later, federal investigators learned that members of the Rigas family misrepresented the company’s financial condition to investors and also siphoned off millions of dollars of Adelphia funds for personal use, leading to the loss of billions of investor dollars and to the convictions of John and Timothy Rigas. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the convictions last year, dismissing claims that the government “was required to prove that petitioners has violated Generally Accepted Accounting Principles or to call an expert accounting witness in order to convict [the Rigases] of securities fraud.” Comcast and Time Warner have since purchased Adelphia’s assets.
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Supreme Court turns down Rigas appeals
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