WASHINGTON — Disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, currently serving a five-and-a-half-year sentence for his conviction in the SunCruz Casinos gambling boat fraud case, may get his sentenced reduced because of his continued cooperation with investigators.
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In a separate case, Abramoff pled guilty to fraud, tax evasion and conspiracy to bribe public officials in Washington, D.C. He has yet to be sentenced.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul Schwartz, in court papers filed in Miami this week, took the first steps in seeking a reduction in Abramoff's sentence. The prosecutor wrote in a filing to U.S. District Judge Paul Huck that the move is "based upon the defendant having provided substantial assistance to the government in the investigation and/or prosecution of others."
The government said Abramoff has continued to cooperate with federal law enforcement authorities in its criminal investigation in Florida. "However, that cooperation is not yet complete and will not be complete within one year of the defendant's initial sentencing," according to the filing.
Schwartz noted that Abramoff "has been cooperating from prison with a corruption investigation venued in Washington, D.C.."
The prosecutor did not specify to the judge by how much the government wants Abramoff's sentence reduced, but wrote they will file a motion for a hearing, "at which time the government will advise the Court of the nature, extent, and value of the defendant's cooperation."
Abramoff acquired a new a new identity in November as federal inmate No. 27593-112 when he began serving his sentence at a minimum security federal prison in Cumberland, Md. for his role in the Florida casinos deal.
He and his partner Adam Kidan pleaded guilty to conspiracy and fraud for concocting a fake $23 million wire transfer to make it appear they were contributing their own money toward the purchase of the $147.5 million SunCruz Casinos gambling fleet. Based on that fraudulent transfer, lenders provided the pair with $60 million in financing.
Abramoff's next court appearance in the Washington influence peddling case is scheduled for June 5th.
He faces between nine and 11 years in prison on the Washington charges.
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