John Spano

Born May 31, 1964

John A. Spano, Jr. is a businessman and swindler who briefly bought control of the NHL's New York Islanders in 1996 before he was exposed as a fraud. Due to the NHL spending a minimal amount in checking his background and an abandonment of usual banking safeguards, he was able to make it appear that he was worth several times more than he actually was.… Read More

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1964 Birth Born on May 31, 1964.


1986 22 Years Old He graduated from Duquesne University with a degree in business administration in 1986.
1990 26 Years Old After working several sales jobs in Pittsburgh and Dallas, he founded the Bison Group in 1990. … Read More


1995 31 Years Old On September 1995, he reached a tentative agreement to buy a 50 percent interest in the Dallas Stars, but the date for the closing was pushed back several times, during which Spano began making what owner Norman Green called unreasonable demands. … Read More
1996 32 Years Old In October 1996, Spano agreed to buy the Islanders from longtime owner John Pickett for $165 million: $80 million for Pickett's 90 percent stake in the team and $85 million for its lucrative cable television contract with SportsChannel New York, which at the time earned the Islanders $13 million a year. … Read More
1997 33 Years Old 1 More Event
He and Pickett agreed to a five-year installment package for the cable rights, and the league's other owners approved the sale in February 1997. … Read More
1998 34 Years Old …  He pleaded guilty to bank fraud on January 13, 1998.
1999 35 Years Old During 1999, his wife divorced him and sold their house, and he moved to a Philadelphia condo where he had tried to pay the rent with an expired credit card, $10,000 in bad checks and wire transfers. … Read More
2000 36 Years Old On January 28, 2000, he was sentenced to 71 months in federal prison and ordered to pay restitution of $11.9 million to his victims, including the Islanders ($3.4 million), two Dallas businesses ($4.4 million), and Mario Lemieux ($1.25 million).


2004 40 Years Old Spano was released in June 2004 on five years' supervised release and moved to a Cleveland suburb.
2005 41 Years Old However, he was arrested again in February 2005 for defrauding numerous companies by promising to obtain loans for them and pocketing the fees without getting the loans.
2009 45 Years Old He was jailed for 51 months and released from prison on April 3, 2009. … Read More
2011 47 Years Old In a scheme that took place from June 2011 until July 2013, Spano stole from his employers Image First, which rents linens to outpatient facilities in Ohio, and its sister company London Cleaners.


2015 51 Years Old He pleaded guilty to charges of collecting almost $70,000 in commissions on fraudulent accounts in May 2015 and was sentenced to 10 years prison on June 17, 2015. … Read More
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