An accountant linked to ZZZZ Best, the carpet-cleaning company founded by entrepreneur Barry Minkow, was convicted Monday of taking a $25,000 bribe to recant after exposing the company as a fraud.

Norman Rothberg, 52, of Marina del Rey, Calif., was found guilty of one count of conspiracy and four counts of mail fraud by the same federal court jury that decided last week Minkow bilked banks and investors of $26 million in what was called the "most massive fraud in the last 10 years on the West Coast."In their first public discussion of the Minkow case, jurors said they believed the young entrepreneur masterminded the fraud and was not the "trained puppy" of mobsters that he claimed to be.

"We didn't feel there was enough proof he was actually being pressured," said juror Curtis Barker, 31, a Bell Gardens bus driver. "I saw him as a conniver (and) a con artist."