Watch part two
They have been called thieves, beggars, and in the words of the Romanian president - "stinky gypsies".
The Roma face unscrupulous press and discrimination in their home country of Romania, where they make up 10 per cent of the population.
Their reputation for being crooked and corrupt has resulted in many Romanians feeling that Roma people can never be trusted.
According to police statistics, a high proportion of crime in the country is carried out by Roma people - but it is mainly petty crime.
Representatives of the Romanian Roma Party argue that this is due to the grim and cruel poverty that the Roma continually face.
This is made even worse, they say, if a Roma wants to find a job - prejudice prevents many Romanian employers from hiring them.
But one Roma millionaire has managed to rise above the bigotry. Kostel Oneriu is worth a cool $75 million.
People & Power meet the man who made his fortune the hard way - but still faces racism, discrimination and prejudice every day.
This episode of People & Power aired from Sunday, February 10, 2008.