RYAN J. FOLEY
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) -- For years, Russ Wasendorf Sr. enjoyed the perks of being a successful businessman: a corporate jet, a fancy swimming pool at his mansion, an extensive wine collection and top chefs who made him meals at the restaurant and office buildings he owned.
Then last summer he admitted that his lavish lifestyle was a lie, built with money he stole from customers at Peregrine Financial Group, the Cedar Falls-based brokerage he founded. Prosecutors said he took $215 million over 20 years in the biggest fraud in Iowa history.
Wasendorf is now being held in isolation at a county jail in a tiny cell where he sleeps on a concrete pad without a pillow, his pastor said. And on Thursday, the 64-year-old learned he will most likely spend the rest of his life in federal prison.
A judge sentenced Wasendorf to 50 years in prison. Wasendorf, who must serve at least 42
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