Justin Paperny, 34 years old, a lifelong resident of Southern California was reared in the affluent community of Encino, in the heart of Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley.
As a young man, Justin enjoyed a distinguished athletic career in baseball. Through sports he had the honor of playing in three separate World Series tournaments, and he had the privilege of playing baseball for the Trojans at the University of Southern California. Through baseball, Justin learned values of good sportsmanship, including honor, integrity, good character, and the importance of teamwork. After graduating from USC in 1997, he entered the world of money management. As a stockbroker, however, Justin lost his way when he was exposed to ethical dilemmas that led him away from the more virtuous values of his youth. Although he earned a significant income through his career as an investment executive working at such previously distinguished firms as Merrill Lynch, Bear Stearns and UBS, a lapse in his moral compass led him to disgrace and what should have been a sterling reputation. Justin’s financial crime revolves around the responsibilities he had in overseeing a client’s hedge fund that later morphed into a Ponzi scheme. The appropriate ethical decision would have been to report the fraud as soon as he suspected wrongdoing. Instead, Justin joined a team of financial professionals in ignoring the published ethical standards of the firm. As a consequence of his behavior, Justin pleaded guilty to violating securities laws, and as a sanction, served just over one year in prison. Justin’s experience with the criminal justice system provided him an opportunity to reevaluate the patterns of his life. He tried to document this transformation through his daily prison blog at JustinPaperny.com and in his newly published book, Lessons From Prison. Through his book, Justin strives to provide readers with insight as to how straying from ethical values-based decisions can lead to personal debacle. Further, he brings readers through all the intricacies of the criminal justice system, including prison adjustment.