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TV pitchman Kevin Trudeau sentenced to 10 years in prison

Controversial author, radio personality, TV infomercial host and salesman Kevin Trudeau, 50, was found guilty on Nov. 12, 2013 of criminal contempt for violating a 2004 court order designed to prevent the pitchman from making false claims about his best-selling book, "The Weight Loss Cure They Don't Want You to Know About."

Kevin Trudeau at International Pool Tour World 8-Ball Championship in Las Vegas, 2005 with actress Domenique Swain
Getty Images
‘If I ever do an infomercial again ... I promise: No embellishments, no puffery, no lies.’ ~ Kevin Trudeau
Getty Images

On March 17 at his scheduled sentencing in Chicago federal court, Trudeau was sentenced to 10 years behind bars for “bilking consumers via infomercials for his best-selling weight loss book,” according to USA Today.

U.S. District Judge Ronald Guzman blasted the 50-year-old Trudeau before the sentencing, saying that for decades he "steadfastly attempted to cheat others for his own personal gain." Guzman called Trudeau "deceitful to the core."

Trudeau has been in jail at Chicago's Metropolitan Correctional Center ever since being found guilty of criminal contempt back in November.

Although prosecutors vehemently went after Trudeau in court and said that he deserved at least 10 years behind bars, defense attorneys were angling for a maximum sentence of two years.

MSN reported Trudeau’s defense attorney, Tom Kirsch, as saying that in comparison, his client’s crimes were “minor compared to fraud in which some people are cheated out of their life savings.”

"A 10-year sentence might be appropriate for a defendant who destroyed lives," Kirsch said. "(But) Trudeau — if he swindled anyone — swindled them out of $30 (the price of the book)."

Another member from Trudeau's team, Carolyn Gurland, said that “Trudeau's legal troubles had already cost him his businesses and his home, and nearly all his other worldly possessions.”

"He has a suitcase containing his personal artifacts. That's what he has left," she said.

Trudeau claims to have gone broke since his recent legal woes began, and told investigators that he didn’t “know where $100,000 in gold bars that he bought had gone.”

Prior to the judge handing down his sentence, Trudeau apologized to the court and claimed to be “a changed man.” The former TV pitchman said he’s been spending his time in jail meditating, praying, and reading self-help books.

"I have truly had a significant reawakening," said Trudeau, who was dressed in orange jail clothes.

"If I ever do an infomercial again ... I promise: No embellishments, no puffery, no lies."

After Trudeau’s 10-minute statement to the court, Guzman had no problem imposing his sentence on the man about whom he said, "Since his 20s, he has steadfastly attempted to cheat others for his own gain."

For more on Trudeau's sentencing, see the video accompanying this article.

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