FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -

While Kim Rothstein began serving her 18-month prison sentence for trying to hide $1 million in jewelry from federal agents, her convicted Ponzi schemer husband may pay a bigger price for his role in the jewelry scam.

In court Tuesday, federal prosecutor Lawrence Levecchio revealed that Scott Rothstein, who's serving a 50-year prison sentence, came up with the idea for his wife to take the jewelry. He also said that Scott Rothstein sent coded letters from prison to his wife about the scam while he was cooperating with federal authorities on numerous criminal cases and swearing under oath that he had come clean after his $1.2 billion fraud exploded.

"The coded letters confirm that Scott was clearly part of the scheme to defraud the bankruptcy court," said attorney Alvin Entin, who represented Kim Rothstein's friend, Stacie Weisman.

Weisman and Kim Rothstein's civil lawyer also pleaded guilty to conspiracy in trying to conceal the jewelry.

Entin said the revelation will hurt the prosecution of other criminal defendants in the case and future cases against others, including Stuart Rosenfeldt and Russell Adler, Rothstein's named partners in his law firm.

"He's a fatally injured witness," said Entin. "I think he'll have about 50 years to think about it."