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Prosecutors Don't Want Jail Time For Admitted Bridgegate Mastermind Wildstein

NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) -- One of the key players in the Bridgegate case will be sentenced on Wednesday, but prosecutors are taking an interesting position on his future.

As WCBS 880's Peter Haskell reported, David Wildstein admitted to being the scheme's mastermind of the scheme to close lanes on the George Washington Bridge in September 2013 for political retribution. But it is the government that wants to keep Wildstein out of prison.

Former federal prosecutor Robert Mintz is not surprised.

"Without David Wildstein's cooperation, it would have been very difficult -- maybe perhaps even impossible -- for the government to have brought this case," Mintz said.

Wildstein's cooperation led to the convictions of two top aides to Gov. Chris Christie – Bridget Kelly and Bill Baroni. Christie himself was never charged, but the scandal contributed to his approval rating falling from around 70 percent to 15 percent.

Wildstein testified he used his position at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to lead the scheme to close lanes near the bridge to create massive gridlock in Fort Lee to punish its Democratic mayor, Mark Sokolich, for not endorsing Christie, a Republican.

Sentencing guidelines call for 21 to 27 months in prison for Wildstein.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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