Ex-Congressman Chaka Fattah Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison
A federal judge has sentenced former U.S. Representative Chaka Fattah to 10 years in prison following his July conviction on charges of participating in a racketeering conspiracy, bank fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, bribery, and falsification of records, among other counts.
Fattah allegedly stole charitable donations to refund an illegal $1 million loan he used during his unsuccessful 2007 mayoral campaign as well as hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal funds to pay a political strategist. He was also found guilty of using campaign funds to pay off his son’s college tuition debt.
U.S. District Judge Harvey Bartle III has ordered Fattah to pay $614,500 in restitution and serve three years of supervised release, PhillyVoice reports. Fattah plans to file an appeal, according to NewsWorks. He reportedly must surrender on January 25th.
Last week, federal prosecutors announced they were seeking more than $600,000 in restitution and 17 to 21 years of prison time for Fattah, claiming he “chose to violate the trust of his constituents and the taxpayers to line his pockets and advance his personal and professional goals at their expense,” according to the Inquirer.
Though the prosecutors’ desired jail sentence would have been within the guideline range, Fattah’s lawyers called it “unnecessarily harsh.”
Also convicted in July were Fattah’s three co-defendants: Robert Brand, Karen Nicholas, and Herbert Vederman, who were all found guilty of RICO and other charges. They will be sentenced later this week.
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