In court on Wednesday, Jackson was sentenced to 30 months (or two and a half years) in prison after pleading guilty to stealing more than $750,000 from his campaign to buy furs, Michael Jackson memorabilia, watches and other miscellaneous items. His wife also pleaded guilty to signing off on tax returns, knowing that the couple had underreported their income.
According to the Chicago Sun Times:
Early in the hearing, Judge Amy Berman Jackson declined to order restitution in the Jackson case in addition to the $750,000 forfeiture that Jesse Jackson Jr. has already agreed to. She said the “victim is the campaign. The campaign is defunct.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Matt Graves had argued that Jackson should have to pay $750,000 in forfeiture plus pay restitution back to the campaign fund. He asked that the money go back to the campaign fund because of “the harm done to the system” and that a monitor be appointed to oversee how the money is dispensed.
Jackson’s attorney Reid Weingarten vigorously fought that, citing “an intensely practical issue here: My client wants to be able to feed his children,” Weingarten said. “He is breaking his head to make that happen before he reports,” to prison.
The judge also rejected Jackson Jr.’s psychiatric defense, saying his string of accomplishments “points to only one conclusion: and that is that you knew better.”
And what did Jackson have to say for himself after the sentencing?
“I was wrong and I don’t fault anyone,” he said.
His wife Sandi Jackson is awaiting her sentence. We’ll keep you updated.
SOURCE: Sun Times