Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin found out at his sentencing on Wednesday that he will spend approximately the next 10 years of his life in prison, USA Today reports.
The businessman-turned-politician, who is expected to turn himself in at a federal prison in early September, was also ordered to cough up $82,000 for charges related to fraud and bribery.
Nagin’s crimes involved accepting money, free vacation trips and even free granite for his family business from other businesses looking to work in the city or interested in helping out with recovery projects in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. He was found guilty in February on 20 out of 21 counts in the wide-reaching scheme.
Still, Nagin received a relatively lenient sentence, given guidelines more in the range of 15-20 years, USA Today notes. According to the news site, the prosecution, on behalf of the government, also pointed to similar corruption convictions that drew harsh sentences, such as former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick’s whopping 28-year sentence.
“Nagin’s widespread and corrosive breach of the public trust—lasting through much of his tenure in office—equals even the worst of these state and local corruption cases,” U.S. Attorney Matthew Coman wrote, according to the report.
However, Nagin’s lawyer Robert Jenkins pleaded for a light sentence, pointing toward Nagin’s otherwise pristine record as a first-time offender.
“Mr. Nagin has been a devoted father, husband and supportive child to his parents and greatly cares for the well-being of his family and is their caretaker,” Jenkins argued, reportedly calling a 20-year sentence a “virtual life sentence.”
Read more at USA Today.