*Tim Duncan’s ex-financial adviser has been sentenced to four years in federal prison for defrauding the retired San Antonio Spurs star of millions of dollars.
ESPN reports that 49-year-old Charles Banks of Atlanta had pleaded guilty in April to one count of wire fraud. According to investigators, Banks “manipulated Duncan into guaranteeing payment of a $6 million debt related to a merchandising business. Prosecutors say Banks failed to disclose commissions and loans he received in the deal.”
“Judge Biery, you may not understand how difficult it is for me to be in the public light in this horrible way – as the poster child for a dumb athlete whose financial adviser took his money,” Duncan told the court, according to the Houston Chronicle.
He compared the “betrayal” to what he felt when his marriage collapsed. Duncan and his ex, Amy Sherrill, married in 2001 but divorced in 2013 after messy legal proceedings.
“He earned my trust as my financial adviser and friend, so I felt comfortable moving forward without replacing the checks and balances as he moved on to running his own thing,” he added.
“Unfortunately, I was wrong about that decision. I just wanted you to own up, pay up and we’d move on, you wouldn’t, so now we’re here with this in front of a judge.”
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Duncan told the judge that his “biggest fear is that you will give him a sentence that will allow him to go out into the world and tell everyone as he has continued to do since his guilty plea that he did not do anything wrong and he proves by having very little to no jail time.”
He continued, “I respectfully ask you, do not do that. I promise you, that if he has any excuse to get back into this line of business, he will be out hustling and doing the same to others.”
Banks expressed his remorse over what he did to Duncan and wept at his sentence, which included four years behind bars and restitution payments of $7.5million, Daily Mail reports. He is set to report to federal prison as early as Aug. 28.
“I’m fine with what they decided. Putting someone in prison is not what you want out of this, but when you break the law, you do a crime, you have to do… you have to pay up,” Duncan told the media after the hearing.
“And unfortunately, this is…that’s what happened. He apologized, and I believe he’s sorry for it. But we got to this point because of what was done, and the judge decides the punishment.”