A former attorney in the law firm used by Scott Rothstein to perpetrate his $1.4 billion Ponzi scheme was sentenced to serve three years in federal prison for helping the firm make illegal federal campaign contributions. Steven Lippman, 50, was sentenced by United States District Judge James Cohn after previously pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy earlier this year. The sentence was less than the 41-month to 51-month range recommended by prosecutors, although not as low as the 18-month range sought by Lippman's lawyers. Lippman was also fined $15,000 and ordered to pay $179,000 in restitution.
According to authorities, Lippman sought to increase the political clout of Rothstein's former law firm, Rothstein Rosenfeldt & Adler ("RRA") by illegally "bundling" political campaign contributions to Senator John McCain's failed 2008 presidential bid. In return for serving as a 'straw donor', RRA provided Lippman with money, home renovations, and a $134,000 Maserati, among other things. Through these contributions, RRA became the largest contributor to McCain's campaign.
Lippman is the latest in former RRA associates to be charged for a role in Rothstein's scheme. Rothstein was sentenced in June 2010 to a fifty-year sentence.