DOJ Seeks Reduced Sentence For Abramoff In D.C. Corruption Case

Federal prosecutors are seeking a reduced sentence for imprisoned GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff in a Washington, D.C., corruption case, citing his his "significant and useful" cooperation against other individuals involved in the scandal that brought down the one-time K Street superstar.

Prosecutors are seeking only a 64-month sentence for Abramoff in the D.C. corruption case, far less than the minimum 108 months behind bars he could have received under federal sentencing guidelines. Abramoff, who is already serving a 70-month prison term in a Florida fraud case, is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 4 in the D.C. case.

The Washington Post is reporting that Abramoff "would serve no more than another three years and three months in prison, not accounting for credit for good behavior awarded by the Bureau of Prisons," meaning he could be out by late 2011, and possibly a year earlier if Abramoff's attorneys are successful in winning furhter reductions.

Abramoff's assistance to DOJ and FBI investigstors "has exposed  significant misconduct by others in and out of public office and revealed to law enforcement officials and the public the manner and means used by government officials to game the system for private advantage in violation of criminal, regulatory, and ethical laws and rules," prosecutors said in a pre-sentencing memo filed today.

According to Abramoff's attorney. their client has spent more than 3,000 hours meeting with more than 100 federal investigators.

The reduced sentence for Abramoff "is appropriate given Abramoff’s extraordinary cooperation to date, cooperation which can be wholly or  partially credited for the convictions of a member of Congress, five high-level legislative branch officials, one high-level executive branch official, and two other mid- to low-level public officials, as well as ongoing matters," prosecutors wrote. This list includes: former Rep. Bob Ney (R-Ohio); Tony Rudy, a one-time top aide to former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas); Neil Volz, Ney's former chief of staff and former lobbyist at Abramoff's firm; Will Heaton, another former Ney aide; and J. Steven Griles, former deputy secretary of the Interior Dept.

The government also recommended that Abramoff's tax penalties be reduced by more than $1 million, citing errors in the original calculation of what Abramoff owed in 2001 and 2002.

Abramoff's lead lawyer, Abbe Lowell, filed a 590-page memo seeking additional reductions, citing the trauma suffered by Abramoff's wife and children since he was incarcerate nearly 20 months ago.
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