Jackson Jr. nearing start of prison term

The clock is ticking for Jesse Jackson Jr. as the convicted former congressman is scheduled to report to prison in less than a month.
October 10, 2013 2:52:19 PM PDT
The clock is ticking for Jesse Jackson Jr. as the convicted former congressman is scheduled to report to prison in less than a month.

He's also supposed to turn-over some of the personal items he illegally purchased with campaign money.

The Rolex. The Michael Jackson memorabilia. Those stuffed elk heads.

Who could forget some of the more unusual items Jackson purchased with campaign money?

ABC7 has been looking into where those items went, and some of the answers may surprise you.

"Today I manned up and tried to accept responsibility for the error of my ways," Jackson said in August.

Part of Jackson's "acceptance of responsibility" requires him to repay the government nearly three-quarters of a million dollars. He has said he thinks he can get the money together by the end of this month.

Less clear is what has happened to some of Jackson's more interesting purchases.

Twelve of them, including a red cape and autographed guitar, were put up for auction. The sale, though, scrubbed last month when US Marshal's learned some of the signatures may be fakes.

"When you look at the amount of money that was spent, his campaign funds were his personal piggy bank," Ronald Manchin, D.C. U.S. Attorney said on February 20.

ABC 7 has learned Jackson has failed to turn over half of the 24 items on the United States Government's forfeiture list.

Among them: The most expensive luxuries he purchased, including a football signed by American presidents valued at $5,000, Michael Jackson's fedora, with a price tag of $4,600.

There's also a $43,350 gold-plated Rolex watch. An FBI spokesman says it's no longer in Jesse Jackson's possession.

A judge could also force Jackson to sell his homes in Chicago and Washington, DC.

The former congressman admitted to using campaign money to pay for home renovations, a washer and dryer, stove, refrigerator, clothing, movie tickets, health club dues, air travel, food, a "holistic retreat," even cigars.

Add it all up and that's how you get the $750,000 Jackson now owes the governments.

As for those stuffed and mounted elk heads, Jackson paid $7,000 for them, but because undercover agents purchased them in a sting, the elk heads are now the property of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The elk heads are not mounted like a prize in the director's office. They're sitting in a storage facility in Washington D.C.

Jackson is scheduled to report to prison the first week of November where he'll begin serving a two-and-a-half year prison term.


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