Former Pennsylvania Democrat State Senator Vincent Fumo, who was found guilty of 137 counts of fraud, obstructing justice and tax violations, received only a fraction of the prison time that was anticipated.
And many people are not happy about it.
Pat Meehan, former U.S. Attorney, was quoted on nbcphiladelphia.com as saying, “The original [sentencing] guidelines were calculated at 22-26 years and a four and a half year sentence just seems remarkably out of kilter with all of it.”
Out of kilter? Understatement.
It seems that Fumo’s medical problems may have helped rescue him from a lengthy sentence, as he takes several medications. (See my earlier post about what can happen when a person has to take several meds.)
It also has been mentioned that his years of public service entered into the lighter jail-time.
Regardless, Fumo was guilt of 137 COUNTS and I do not believe that any Main Streeter who was found guilty of that kind of criminality, even if they had medical issues similar to Fumo, and even if they had a sterling reputation otherwise in the private sector, could have gotten off this lightly.
Another note. Fumo’s attorneys had argued that if their 65 year-old client were to receive a sentence of over 20 years that it would essentially be life imprisonment. (So?)
That didn’t seem to matter much with Bernard Madoff who received a 150-year sentence, which is a more-than-life sentence but not a death sentence. (His attorney argued that no more than 20 years would be sufficient punishment, due to his age, 71.)
Realistically, there is not much comparison between the crimes Madoff committed and those of Fumo. But the point is for Madoff, age had absolutely no bearing. For Fumo it did (coupled with his sterling public service, before he went corrupt, I suppose.)
Interesting note: Fumo succeeded Democrat Buddy Cianfrani in 1978 when Cianfrani was convicted of racketeering, bribery and obstruction of justice.
While Fumo may have received some time, it was not enough to fit the crime.
Over For Now,
Main Street One