Judge Pat Priest sentenced Tom DeLay to three years in prison.
The three-year sentence was on the charge of conspiring to launder corporate money into political donations during the 2002 elections.
On the charge of money laundering, DeLay was sentenced to five years but that was probated for 10 years.
He was taken into custody but he was expected to be released as soon as he posted an appeals bond.
The judge then ordered the courtroom cleared except for the lawyers.
Prior to the sentence, DeLay spoke to the court.
He was unrepentant.
“I fought the fight. I ran the race. I kept the faith,” DeLay said.
Judge Priest said he agreed with the jury’s guilty verdict, returned in November, and would have instructed a different verdict if he did not believe DeLay conspired to break the law.
He said there is no higher principle than those who write the laws should follow the law.
Gotta admit, I didn’t expect DeLay to get jail time – I figure it’d be probation all the way. But then I didn’t really expect him to get convicted, either. I think I need to start not expecting to win the Lottery.
There’s a lot more at that link about how the day in court went. DeLay is still a long way from actually seeing the inside of a jail cell, of course. He’s free to walk among us during the appeals process, which may take as long as it took to get him to trial in the first place, and I can’t say I really expect his convictions to be held up by all of the courts that may get a chance to rule on them. But for today at least, we can all revel in the fact that Convicted Felon Tom DeLay is officially a jailbird. Sometimes, karma really comes through. And if you’re looking for a way to celebrate this monumental event, I recommend a slice of Schadenfreude Pie, with a hat tip to Linkmeister for the reference.
UPDATE: Juanita checks in.