I was a white collar criminal that got busted, and spent some time in jail. Here to answer some questions about prison life in the FEDERAL system.
In 2006 I was in the process of leaving a company that was in shambles. I was hired on as a jack of all trades, but before I got there they made lots of mistakes. I decided after years of working for other people I'd work for myself. For the sake of convenience and to protect my identity we'll what I did buying and selling wholesale products (which it basically was). I had done this legitmiately for years.
At this same time, I had recently gotten married and just had found out that my mother's cancer came back a second time. My Dad would complain to me on the phone that my mother couldn't get chemotherapy because the insurance companies wouldn't allow treatment without a particular test to be complete, but the company wouldn't authorize the test. Each time she was supposed to get chemotherapy it was a battle. It created undue stress, and on top of it the insurance would only pay for some of the medical expenses. My Dad had left cross country as a self-employed computer programmer who had to take a nearly 50,000 pay cut to work as an employee for a company that would provide insurance for my mother, so they were cash strapped as well.
I was just newly married. I had just started a business, after leaving another company. A good friend of mine recommended a way to defraud very large companies. It basically amounted to a modified ponzu scheme. We'd work with them for a bit with small credit terms, we'd work with them and extend credit terms until we couldn't extend them anymore, and then bounce without paying the last bill which would be huge compared to the ones we paid.
Obviously, unethical - but at the time I didn't really mind. In the industry that I was involved in it was EXTREMELY common for companies to do this. I worked at a medium sized company in this industry and not only did we benefit from individuals that did this and sold the goods and incredibly low rates, we were hurt by companies that did this to us - so I was very familiar with this process. Typically, insurance covers the losses once it has been identified as fraud. There isn't much consumer damage. I got paid. I justified it. It gave me money that I needed. I was able to give my parents the tens of thousands of dollars that they needed. I was able to arrange travel visits for my mother during the last leg of her cancer that would otherwise been unaffordable so she could see everyone she wanted to see before her passing.
I got caught. The funny part is that I got caught after me and my co-defendant decided not to do it anymore. I pleaded guilty, and got sentenced to 12 months and 1 day in federal prison.
In case you are wondering - my mom passed, my wife and I are divorced, and I'm pretty much broke. So if you feel like I'm an asshole and got what I deserved, well it pretty much did.
I'm here to answer questions about what life is like for a white collar criminal in jail, after jail, and what life is like after the arrest waiting to be sentenced (my case was over 2 years+ long).
Here is the badge for the 1/2 way house which I had to report to for 30 days after I got released twice a week. http://i.imgur.com/UUrb86Z.jpg
Here is the 1st page of my judgement indicating that I owe a $100 special assessment. (That's basically a fee for every count that you have against you - not restitution. That's different. I owe about $2Million): http://i.imgur.com/9mtPK91.jpg
The 2nd page of my judgement indicating my imprisonment: http://i.imgur.com/9YgjpY4.jpg
Online reporting for probation: http://i.imgur.com/RxHeOzr.png
EDIT: I forgot the most important thing. This is the the link to the petition for MDC Brooklyn. If you feel after reading this AMA that even though these guys are prisoners they shouldn't be treated like animals please go ahead and sign the petition and share it as much as you can. Thanks.