Feds recommend 4 years in prison for Jesse Jackson Jr.

June 7, 2013 8:18:17 PM PDT
It is perhaps a touch of solace for the Jackson family that the sentences for this husband and wife may not have to be served at the same time, so their children will have at least one parent around. But in hundreds of pages of documents, the government lays out why it feels the couple who seemed to have it all should pay a heavy price.

On Friday, the D.C. U.S. Attorney's office recommended to the court how much time the couple should spend behind bars. He for pleading guilty to misusing his campaign funds and her for underreporting income on federal tax returns.

Prosecutors want Jesse Jackson Jr. to serve four years in a federal prison and to serve three more years on supervised release. They also want Jackson to pay $750,000 in restitution and to forfeit $750,000 in property.

Sandi Jackson is recommended to serve 18 months in federal prison and to pay just over $168,000 in restitution.

Prosecutors also asked the court to stagger the couple's sentence for the benefit of their nine and thirteen-year-old children. Mrs. Jackson would be locked up first and when she returns home for the house arrest portion of her term, then Mr. Jackson would begin his longer sentence.

Sandi Jackson's lawyers have asked the court for probation and no prison time.

Jackson's father, the Rev. Jesse Jackson appeared not to be aware of today's legal action as he stepped into a movie premiere. But in defense filings, the Reverend's letter to the judge speaks to the pain of a father watching his son fall.

"I am not sure at what point Jesse Jr. began to foil his own ambitions," the Reverend writes.

Attorneys for Jesse Jr., who was diagnosed by the Mayo Clinic as having a bi-polar condition, want the judge to review in private their client's mental health hoping to mitigate his sentence.

Federal judge Amy Berman Jackson does not have to accept the U.S. Attorney's recommendations. The guidelines suggest she could sentence the defendants to much less time, or slightly more.

The sentencing date has been set for July 3.


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