Tom Petters’ First Interview from Prison: Twin Cities Business Exclusive

Tom Petters gives his first interview from prison, speaking with Twin Cities Business Editor in Chief Dale Kurschner.

Tom Petters was once one of Minnesota's most promising entrepreneurial success stories. He saved nearly 2,000 jobs and the businesses of Fingerhut, Sun Country Airlines, and Polaroid.

Today, he has a bank account balance averaging $100 a month and lives with a roommate in Cellblock C-1 of the United States Penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kansas, where he is expected to eventually die: For his role in a $3.65 billion fraud scheme involving his company, Petters Companies Inc., Petters was sentenced to 50 years in prison with no chance for parole.

After more than three years of silence, Petters explained in a five-hour interview with Twin Cities Business Editor in Chief Dale Kurschner how the nation's third-largest Ponzi scheme occurred on his watch.

Here, for the first time, is the story of what happened to the once-upon-a-time, fast-rising Minnesota business star—from his perspective.

Read the Q&A with Petters by clicking here, or to read about Kurschner's experience in Leavenworth, read his editor's note from the May issue here.