What happens to bankers and thrift executives who plead guilty to or are convicted of bank fraud, then sent to jail? They end up in a federal prison such as the one in Minersville,, Pa., that I visited earlier this month.

The jail I visited is not the kind of lockup seen in the gangster movies. Rather, it is on a campus-like setting and has several low-rise buildings surrounded by playing fields. There are no fences, and visitors are not questioned. They simply produce identification and sign in and out.

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