POSTED: 12:52 p.m. HST, Jul 18, 2011
A man who pleaded guilty to charges that he swindled Hawaii prison inmates and their families out of nearly $2 million in a Ponzi scheme was supposed to have been sentenced in federal court this morning.
But the judge rescheduled sentencing for Perry Jay Griggs to next month because the court’s pretrial services is recommending a longer sentence than prescribed in the federal court advisory guideline range.
The judge does not have to abide by the recommendation.
However, under a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, defendants facing a sentence higher than the guideline range must be given prior notice and an opportunity to challenge the facts used to justify the higher sentence.
Griggs pleaded guilty to one count each of wire fraud and mail fraud in April.
He and his wife admitted swindling Hawaii inmates incarcerated on the mainland to mortgage their homes and empty their savings and retirement accounts to invest in their bogus commodities trading company for the promise of guaranteed returns. Griggs was serving time with the Hawaii inmates for running a Ponzi scheme in California.
His wife, Rachelle Griggs, is also scheduled to be sentenced next month.