Feds Want To Seize Jacksons’ Homes
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WASHINGTON (CBS) – Federal prosecutors have asked a judge to order former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. and his wife, former Ald. Sandi Jackson, to forfeit their homes in Chicago and Washington, D.C., as part of their upcoming sentencing next week.
The Jacksons are set to be sentenced on Wednesday, after the two pleaded guilty to criminal charges.
Jackson Jr., 48, has pleaded guilty to misusing $750,000 in campaign funds for personal expenses, while Sandi, 49, has pleaded guilty to failing to report that money as income on their tax returns. The two resigned from their elected offices before pleading guilty.
In a motion filed with the federal court in D.C. on Friday, federal prosecutors asked a judge to allow them to seize the Jacksons’ homes in Chicago and Washington, as well as a retirement account worth nearly $80,000 to help pay off $750,000 in forfeiture, plus another $750,000 in restitution the feds have sought from the couple.
Prosecutors said the Jacksons have agreed to forfeit 24 items they bought with money they raided from the congressman’s campaign fund, purchased for a total of nearly $62,000. So far, they have turned over 12 of those items, which were purchased for a little more than $21,000.
Although prosecutors have yet to reveal what items have been seized, according to court records, the couple used campaign cash to buy stuffed elk heads, celebrity memorabilia, a $43,500 Rolex watch, high-priced electronics, furs, and jewelry.
Federal marshals will handle the sale of any seized property, prosecutors said.
Prosecutors are seeking a sentence of four years in prison for Jackson Jr. and 18 months in prison for Sandi, although have recommended the judge stagger their sentences so both are not in jail at the same time.
Jackson Jr.’s attorneys have asked that he be allowed to serve his prison term first, due to his mental health issues, so that Sandi could work while he’s behind bars and stabilize their finances. Jackson has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.