Inside the palatial Palm Beach County Courthouse on March 29, 2000, Melvin Donald Ruth pleaded for his freedom, trying to convince the judge he wouldn't run if he were let go. Ruth, who had been jailed on a probation violation stemming from a 1996 fraud conviction, had reason to feel some confidence. Most everyone who has ever met the tall and trim Ruth attests to what a smooth, almost magical salesman he is. But Ruth is much more than that; he's also a predatory swindler who, during the past decade, has been charged with numerous crimes in Broward and Palm Beach counties. And it was in courtrooms where Ruth practiced his greatest trick: making... More >>>