A judge sentenced former Rep. Corrine Brown, a Democrat, to five years in federal prison Monday after being convicted of mail, wire, and tax fraud in May.
U.S. District Judge Timothy Corrigan said at Brown’s sentencing hearing that she broke the public’s trust by abusing her position for her personal benefit, the Florida Times-Union reported.
“This was a crime born of entitlement and greed, committed to supporting a lifestyle that was beyond their means,” said Corrigan. “Just think of the good that could have been done with that money if it would have been used for its intended purpose.”
Corrigan also sentenced Brown to three years of probation in addition to the five-year prison sentence. Brown’s attorney said Brown plans to appeal her sentence.
Brown was found guilty in May of taking $800,000 worth of funds from a fraudulent charity, One Door for Education, that was supposed to provide scholarships to underprivileged students and using the money to pay for lavish parties, luxury vacations, and shopping sprees.
Elias “Ronnie” Simmons, the 71-year-old ex-congresswoman’s chief of staff, received a 48-month prison sentence while One Door for Education President Carla Wiley got 21 months behind for her involvement in the scheme.
Both Simmons and Wiley had been sentenced to three years of supervised release in addition to their prison terms.
Corrigan ordered Brown to report to a yet-to-be-determined prison no later than January 8, 2018.