Former Newark Mayor Gets 27-Month Sentence
New York Times coverage of today’s sentencing.
After lecturing a federal prosecutor for adhering “heartlessly” to a cold version of bureaucratic justice, a federal judge on Tuesday sentenced former Mayor Sharpe James of Newark to 27 months in prison for failing to disclose his romantic relationship with a woman whom he helped to get a lucrative deal on some city-owned land.
United States District Judge William Martini also ordered Mr. James to pay a $100,000 fine.
Mr. James’s former mistress, Tamika Riley, was sentenced to 15 months in prison and ordered to pay $27,000 in restitution to the city.
In an angry and frustrated outburst from the bench, Judge Martini, who upheld the convictions of Mr. James and Ms. Riley last week, lashed out at the prosecutors from the United States attorney’s office in a remarkable admission. “Now I’m trying to talk about what happened here — what really happened,” he said.
Mr. James was convicted in April on fraud and corruption charges for illegally steering nine parcels of city-owned land to Ms. Riley between 2001 and 2005. She paid a total of $46,000 for the lots and resold them — often just weeks later — for a total of $665,000 without making any improvements to them. In addition to the fraud and corruption charges, Ms. Riley, 39, was found guilty of tax evasion and of lying about her income to collect housing subsidies.