A federal judge today sentenced Chuck Turner to three years behind bars for accepting a $1,000 bribe, a stinging rebuke to the former Boston city councilor.
US District Judge Douglas P. Woodlock rejected an appeal for leniency by defense attorneys, who had asked that the 70-year-old civil rights crusader receive probation and be spared prison because of his more than four decades of service as a community activist and elected official.
From all that I know of the case (which honestly isn’t that much), Turner was duly convicted, and I think it’s appropriate that he serve time. I have to say, though, that three years seems harsh for a 70-year-old man who is obviously not any kind of threat, and strikes me as the justice system giving Turner a whack for being a royal pain in their backsides. However, I may well be wrong – I would be interested to know whether political corruption cases of similar gravity have resulted in similar sentences.