Spirit of Disservice

Former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio was convicted, but that's small consolation to Minnesotans who lost their savings

A jury of eight men and four women deliberated for six days before pronouncing their verdict: guilty on 19 counts. Nacchio, 57, faces a maximum of 10 years in prison and $19 million in fines. He may also be ordered to forfeit some $52 million in ill-gotten earnings. Sentencing is set for July 27, but Nacchio's lawyers have said they will appeal.

Local retirees rejoiced at the jury's findings, but it won't get their money back. And now they have a new worry: They fear that current Qwest CEO Dick Notebaert will cut their health insurance benefits as the company tries to right itself.

Confined to his wheelchair, Caldwell bristles at that possibility.

"My situation is not a tragedy. What Joe Nacchio did to the company, that's a tragedy," Caldwell says. "I think Nacchio's a crook, and I'd like to punch him in the nose."

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