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Cry A River

The average Lexington resident isn't sitting on top of millions of dollars. Investments are often done with funds accumulated over many years of hard work as teachers, health care workers, firefighters, truck drivers, office managers and so on. When an investment goes bad, it can take a life's savings with it.

The people who ran Agape World took advantage of those kinds of hard-working people. Several of them have already gone to prison on various charges related to the Ponzi scheme that bilked blue-collar investors of more than $400 million.

The third person sentenced in the Agape World scheme was last week ordered to spend the next 7 years in federal prison. A news report described his courtroom apology as "tearful." But those who have had their savings and investments looted will likely be unmoved by a choked-up voice and damp eyes at a sentencing hearing.

The man just sentenced was also ordered to pay $179 million in restitution. Another Agape broker was sentenced to 9 years in prison (also ordered to pay $179 million in restitution), while the group's ringleader has been sent to prison for 25 years (he must pay the same amount in restitution).

Four other defendants have pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing; at least two of them cooperated with prosecutors in the case.

The Long Island, New York-based scheme wiped out the investments of about 4,000 people, officials said. We doubt those thousands of victims will accept tears and apologies as compensation for their financial losses.

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