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Raffaello Follieri pleads guilty to rich-guy crimes



Tbdraffaellofollieri091108 Anne Hathaway's shady ex-boyfriend, Italian businessman Raffaello Follieri, pleaded guilty to criminal charges Wednesday, the Wall Street Journal reports. That's right, The Juice* reads the WSJ. So? You think we live by Victoria Beckham's haircuts alone?

Follieri pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, eight counts of actually committing wire fraud and five counts of money laundering in connection to wiring money from a business venture to fund his lavish celeb lifestyle.

"I did not have investor authorization to use the money that way," Follieri said. "I knew what I was doing was wrong."

You'll remember him as the guy who told investors he had ties to the Vatican and could get church-owned property for them below market values. He also said the Vatican appointed him chief financial officer and he met with the Pope all the time. Who would possibly think that was all lies? (Prosecutors alleged he gave $385k to the Vatican without investor permission in order to maybe make that stuff true someday.)

He faces a prison sentence of up 63 months, forfeiture of $2.44 million and deportation back to Italy after he is released. Maybe he can call his pal John McCain for help, since Follieri hosted a yacht party for him in 2006.

[Photo: Raf with bug-eyed Anne back in February. Getty Images]


[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 10:00am]


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