Soon after arriving at Taft Camp, I realized how much I could accomplish. The opportunities are endless and for the first time in quite a while, I was eager and determined to get my life moving. I constantly repeated all the common mantras we’ve heard a million times: “one day at a time”, “you can do it” and “stay strong” were just a few. They all worked. I immediately consumed my days by exercising, reading, studying and writing. My full-time job was preparing to return home better and stronger. As I approach completion of my sixth month, I’m proud to say I have not let up, not even for a day.
One goal I have yet to fulfill is to repair some life long relationships that were damaged due to my conviction. I brought a close friend into my case without disclosing the risks. I mistakenly assured him that everything was fine and it was not illegal. It’s obvious how things turned out since I’m writing this blog from a federal prison camp. He repeatedly told me that he didn’t want to be involved. Ultimately, against his better judgment, he acquiesced out of loyalty to our friendship. Before long, the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission were knocking on his door looking for answers. Fortunately, my friend was not charged with a crime.
I’ve written to my friend expressing my deepest regrets, asking him to accept my apology. I haven’t heard from him but my fingers are crossed at mail call every day hoping that he has responded.
Certainly, when I was involved in actions that led to my demise as a financial professional, I didn’t envision myself a criminal. When I exposed my friend to my activities it was with the intention of sharing what I mistakenly believed to be my good fortune. Yet, as many wise men have said, “if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.”
The government charged me with criminal acts. Despite my good intentions, the bad judgment I used implicated my friend. Had I known what I know now, I would have made better decisions. Perhaps some day my friend and I will reconcile. For now, that friendship is in abeyance, a casualty of my conviction.