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Faked suicide adds two years to fraud sentence

  • Story Highlights
  • Judge says Sam Israel "thumbed his nose at the system"
  • Two-year sentence exceeds federal guidelines
  • Israel faked his suicide to escape jail sentence for fraud
  • Hedge fund manager faced 20 years for defrauding investors
By Deborah Brunswick
CNN
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NEW YORK (CNN) -- The former hedge fund manager who faked his own suicide to avoid prison time for fraud will spend an extra two years in jail for failing to surrender himself, according to the U.S attorney's office.

Sam Israel tried to get out of serving a 20 year sentenced by faking his suicide. It added two years.

Sam Israel tried to get out of serving a 20 year sentenced by faking his suicide. It added two years.

Federal Judge Kenneth Karas sentenced Sam Israel III in White Plains, New York, on Wednesday, giving him two more years in addition to his previous sentence.

Federal guidelines call for a 12- to 18-month sentence, but Karas noted that Israel's crime "took a fair amount of planning," and he criticized the former hedge fund manager for "thumbing his nose at the system."

The additional sentence will begin after Israel serves his first 20 years for fraud.

Israel admitted to authorities in March that he had faked his own suicide to escape his jail sentence.

He was supposed to report to a Massachusetts prison in June of 2008 to serve a 20-year sentence for defrauding investors of Bayou Management out of approximately $450 million.

But he did not show up at the facility. Days later, his sport-utility vehicle was found abandoned on a bridge in upstate New York, with the words "Suicide is Painless" -- title of the theme song for the television show "M.A.S.H." -- written in dust on the the hood.

Authorities determined the suicide setup was a ruse and launched a major manhunt to find Israel.

He turned himself in to law enforcement July 2, 2008.

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