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Investment adviser to plead guilty for role in $1.2 billion Scott Rothstein Ponzi scheme

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida — An investment adviser is set to become the latest person to plead guilty in the $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme operated by disbarred attorney Scott Rothstein.

A plea hearing is set Wednesday in Fort Lauderdale federal court for Michael Szafranski on a wire fraud conspiracy charge. Prosecutors say he lured investors to Rothstein through a variety of deceptions, including assurances he reviewed confidential legal settlements that did not actually exist.

The charge carries a maximum 5-year prison sentence.

More than two dozen other people have been convicted in the Rothstein scam, operated out of his former Fort Lauderdale law office until its October 2009 collapse. Rothstein himself is serving a 50-year prison sentence after pleading guilty.

Trial for the current lone remaining defendant, bank executive Frank Spinosa, is set for October.

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