Maureen McDonnell is the former first lady of Virginia who was accused of getting herself lavish gifts while her husband was governor of the state, will have another chance to convince everybody of her side of the story on Friday, during her own sentencing hearing.
Her sentencing is set for 9 a.m. in front of U.S. District Court Judge James Spencer.
Maureen McDonnell is Bob McDonnell’s wife, and he actually served as 71st governor of Virginia from January 2010 to January 2014. McDonnell was sentenced last month to two years in prison by a federal judge for accepting gifts that came from a wealthy donor. But Maureen McDonnell was also found guilty of public corruption charges on the way.
“Mrs. McDonnell has lived the worst nightmare of a public official’s spouse: vilified in the media and blamed not only for ruining her husband’s political career, but for sending him to prison,”
the defence attorneys wrote among their sentencing recommendation to U.S. District Judge James Spencer.
Prosecutors are looking to obtain a prison term of 18 months. Mrs. McDonnell’s lawyers intend to ask for 4,000 hours of community service instead of an actual prison sentence. Or maybe meet halfway with the prosecutors: 4 ½ months of home imprisonment combined with 4 ½ months of prison.
The McDonnells were both convicted of corruption. He was convicted on 11 counts and the former first lady on 8, including $177,000 worth of gifts and loans from Williams, a CEO of Star Scientific at that time, in exchange for promoting a new dietary supplement. Moreover Maureen McDonnell was also convicted of an additional count of obstruction of justice, but the judge eventually tossed out.
In the 25-page brief, it is described how Maureen McDonnell actually dedicated her life to their five children and to supporting her husband’s political before cracking under pressure and her fear of failure.
A jury back in September convicted the McDonnells of favuor-doing for ex Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams in exchange for over $165,000 in gifts along with low-interest loans.
This gifts included $20,000 in designer clothing and accessories, which Williams purchased for Maureen McDonnell while being on a Manhattan shopping spree, along with an engraved $6,500 Rolex watch she gave to Bob McDonnell as a Christmas present. Williams was also the one paying for vacations and golf outings.