February 17, 2005
Springtime for Lea?

Lea Fastow's lawyers are asking the judge to cut her sentence short.

In a motion made public Wednesday, Mike DeGeurin asked U.S. District Judge David Hittner to vacate her one-year prison term for not reporting personal income from an Enron side deal on her 2000 tax return.

DeGeurin notes that her sentence, which began July 12, is twice what people normally serve for the misdemeanor tax crime.

He also said she has been in a maximum-security detention center in downtown Houston, while most tax offenders are in more amenable minimum-security institutions.

Prosecutors don't object to the motion entirely, although they don't agree in full either. While there's no guarantee the judge will free her, Hittner is expected to seriously consider it.

"She has now spent seven months under fluorescent lights, not allowed outside for fresh air even for recreation, in overcrowded conditions and without the basic programs offered by a normal institution. She has been serving hard time in the literal sense and without complaint," states the motion.

I don't really care one way or the other about this. Lea was a bit player, and has mostly been a pawn in the prosecutorial chess match. But please don't ask me to have sympathy for her. She didn't get where she is by the mere whims of a mercurial Fate, and however harsh fluorescent lighting may be, I think she'd prefer these accomodations to those at Gatesville.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on February 17, 2005 to Enronarama | TrackBack