Former New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin received a 10-year prison term Wednesday after being convicted of bribery, money laundering and other corruption back in February.
Nagin, 58, had served two terms in office, and was mayor of New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005. Nagin had accepted roughly $500K from various businesses that wanted to work in the city, and the former mayor also received free vacations and truckloads of granite which he was able to use in his family's business.
U.S. District Judge Helen Berrigan handed down the sentence Wednesday morning, and Nagin maintained his innocence of any wrongdoing. Prosecutors were pushing for a longer sentence, more like 20 years, but Berrigan took into account that Nagin made little profit as compared to others in a multi-million dollar scandal. Berrigan commented, "Mr. Nagin claimed a much, much smaller share of the profits in this conspiracy,."
Directly before receiving his sentence, Nagin thanked Berrigan for her professionalism, and said, "I trust that God's going to work all this out." Nagin is scheduled to report to the federal prison Oakdale, La., some time in September.
Here Nagin makes his controversial post-Katrina "Chocolate City" remarks in 2006:
Kanye West got a word in:
Prosecutors also named Nagin's two sons as being part of the bribery scandal for accepting the free granite, though they were never charged. Though federal guidelines would suggest the 20-year prison term, Judge Berrigan also took into account character references that portrayed Nagin to be a devoted son, husband and father. Berrigan also noted that Nagin exhibited "a genuine if all too infrequent" desire to help New Orleans residents after Katrina hit.
Ray Nagin scandal Twitter intrigue:
How long before we see a photo of W. looking wistfully out the window of his plane as it flies over Ray Nagin's prison?
— Dennis Miller Show (@DennisDMZ) July 9, 2014
Ray Nagin sentenced to 10 years of covering LeBron free agency. Or federal prison.
— Tim Reynolds (@ByTimReynolds) July 9, 2014
Nagin enters courtroom with that trademark half-smirk on his face.
— Jarvis DeBerry (@jarvisdeberry) July 9, 2014
Berrigan: Mr. Nagin’s crimes were motivated n part by a deeply misguided desire to provide for those closest to him."
— Gordon Russell (@GordonRussell1) July 9, 2014
Image via Wikimedia Commons