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Ebbers sentenced to 25 years in prison

NEW YORK, July 13 (UPI) -- Bernie Ebbers, convicted in an $11 billion accounting scandal at the company he helped start, was sentenced Wednesday to 25 years in prison.

Ebbers, 63, was the chief executive of WorldCom Inc. from 1985 until 2002 when the giant telecommunications company collapsed in an $11 billion accounting scandal.

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A New York jury in April found Ebbers guilty of conspiracy, securities fraud and filing false statements in the company's collapse.

On Monday, a court approved a settlement of civil litigation that obliges Ebbers to surrender all his possessions except a modest house for his wife and $50,000 in cash.

U.S. District Judge Barbara Jones sentenced Ebbers Wednesday to at least 25 years behind bars, TheStreet.com reported.

Ebbers used to be worth more than $1.5 billion.

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