Monday, May 25, 2020

DOJ Recommends Maximum Prison Sentence for GOP Rep.

The Justice Department is recommending that former Republican Congressman Chris Collins of New York receive the maxim sentence after pleading guilty to one charge of conspiring to commit securities fraud.

Collins initially fought the charges before switching his plea to guilty one day after resigning from Congress. (Fox News)

Collins is scheduled to be sentenced in a Manhattan federal courtroom on Jan. 17, and his plea agreement, along with a Presentence Investigation Report, provided a sentencing range of 46 to 57 months in prison. The DOJ recommended a sentence Monday at the maximum end — or around four-and-a-half years.

“The Government believes that a sentence at the top end of the Guidelines range is necessary in order to satisfy the objectives of Title 18 United States Code, Section 3553(a), and in particular to promote respect for the law, to provide just punishment for the offense, and to achieve general deterrence,” prosecutors with the Southern District of New York said in a letter to U.S. District Court Judge Vernon S. Broderick.

Collins’ conviction followed an indictment on charges related to insider trading allegations, as prosecutors said he provided non-public information about biotechnology company Innate — for which he sat on the board — to his son Cameron, tipping him off that a drug the company was working on had failed a trial so that Cameron could sell his shares before the stock price went down. Collins was a sitting congressman at the time and was at a Congressional Picnic at the White House when he learned the news, prosecutors said.

Collins was also accused of lying about this to investigators.

Prosecutors say it doesn’t matter that Collins didn’t benefit financially, explaining that his shares were momentarily untransferable, so he did the next best thing: tip off his son.

The 69-year-old former lawmaker was the second Republican congressman to throw his support behind then-candidate Donald Trump in February 2016.

AAN Staff
AAN Staff
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