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Mar 2, 2012 11:04 AM by AP

Jurors still deliberating in Stanford fraud trial

HOUSTON (AP) - A federal jury has resumed deliberating the fate of jailed Texas tycoon R. Allen Stanford on charges he bilked $7 billion from investors in a massive Ponzi scheme.

Jurors in the financier's fraud trial in Houston continued deliberating Friday. The panel began deliberations Wednesday.

If the jury reaches a verdict Friday, it won't be announced until Monday because the trial judge isn't available to hear the decision due to a prior engagement.

Defense attorneys told jurors that Stanford made money for investors who bought certificates of deposit from his Caribbean bank.

Prosecutors countered that Stanford took investors' money and flushed it away on failed businesses and his lavish lifestyle.

If convicted, Stanford could be sentenced to more than 20 years in prison.

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