Ponzi Schemer Allen Stanford Checks into Hospital as His Right-Hand Man Pleads Guilty

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It's been an all-around terrible week for Sir R. Allen Stanford, the mastermind of an $8 billion Ponzi scheme run out of a lush downtown Miami office. (Here's our feature about the Miami players in his criminal empire, if you haven't read it.)

First came word this morning that James Davis -- Stanford's right-hand man, CFO, and the most famous dude in Baldwyn, Mississippi -- will enter a guilty plea in Houston court for his role in the fraud.

Sir Allen did not take the news well. He checked into a Houston-area hospital this morning with a high pulse rate, according to the AP.

As if the combo of your best friend turning against you and a heart attack aren't bad enough, the double-whammy comes on the heels of two other spectacularly embarassing losses for the once financial giant.

Stanford, who used to rule the tiny Caribbean island of Antigua like a cross between William Randolph Hearst and Ron Burgundy, was scheduled to appear in court later today to ask for court assistance in finding a new attorney.

The former billionaire, it seems, now has no cash to pay for his lawyers.

To top it off, on Monday, a federal appeals court ruled Stanford must stay in jail despite complaints that the case against him lacks merit and that his prison lacks air conditioning.

Quite a fall for a guy who bought a Coral Gables castle complete with moat for one of his mistresses just a couple of years ago. On the upside, Stanford has gone a couple of months without threatening to punch any reporters or cameramen.

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