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ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) _ A one time dot-com billionaire from Las Vegas has been sentenced to nine years in prison for defrauding investors in his software company in 2001.

Prosecutors had sought a much longer sentence for Charles “Junior” Johnson, founder and CEO of the now-defunct PurchasePro.

Johnson was the ringleader of a scheme to falsely inflate PurchasePro’s revenue in the first three months of 2001, as the high-tech economy was in freefall.

Seven people were convicted in the long-running investigation, which also exposed improper accounting practices at America Online, which had been PurchasePro’s business partner.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press.

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