In 2005, Angelo DiPietro was wrongfully convicted by a federal jury for his participation in an alleged kidnapping of a Ponzi scheme operator, known as John Perazzo. At DiPietro's trial, the prosecution relied extensively on the testimony of a jailhouse snitch, Maurizio "Mo" Sanginiti, who claimed that Angelo DiPietro unleashed a slew of friends to kidnap John Perazzo in an effort to recoup monies that he had stolen. In exchange for his testimony, Maurizio Sanginiti, who was facing life in prison, received a sentence of time served and was immediately released from prison. Angelo DiPietro, however, was sentenced to spend the rest of his life in a federal prison as a result of his conviction.
On April 24, 2009, Angelo DiPietro's innocence was brought to light through investigative reports prepared by Downstate Illinois Innocence Project Investigator, Bill Clutter. Believing in his innocence, Clutter's firm, along with prominent defense attorney Joseph Bondy, and a team of investigative journalists unleashed a withering investigation into the case. In the matter of a few months, they discovered a plethora of evidence proving Angelo DiPietro's innocence, including numerous instances of perjury, deceit, manipulation, and misconduct by federal prosecutors. To this end, the jury responsible for convicting Angelo DiPietro eight years earlier had never known that federal prosecutors possessed physical evidence, phone records, and multiple witnesses averring that DiPietro was innocent of the crimes for which he stood accused.