Jury breaks with no verdict in Petters fraud trial

AP News
Posted: Nov 30, 2009 6:08 PM

Jurors in the Tom Petters fraud trial have gone home without reaching a verdict after three days of deliberations.

The Minnesota businessman is accused of running a Ponzi scheme that cost investors more than $3.5 billion. He's charged with 20 counts of wire fraud, mail fraud, conspiracy and money laundering.

The deliberations reached about 17 hours Monday after two days last week and a break for the holiday weekend. Besides the 20-count indictment, the jurors are also working through 49 pages of instructions from the judge.

Petters claims other defendants carried out the fraud without his knowledge, then testified against him in hopes of lighter sentences.

The jury reconvenes Tuesday in federal court in St. Paul.