Defense: Ex-Gov Bob McDonnell Should Volunteer, Not Go to Prison

Lawyers for former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell have asked a judge to sentence him to community service instead of prison for his federal corruption convictions.

In a sentencing brief filed Tuesday, defense attorneys suggested 6,000 hours of full-time community service over three years. Prosecutors had not yet filed their sentencing brief.

McDonnell, a Republican who was once on the short list to be Mitt Romney's vice presidential running mate, will be sentenced Jan. 6 for promoting a dietary supplement in exchange for more than $165,000 in gifts and loans.

His wife, Maureen, also was convicted on several charges, and will be sentenced Feb. 20.

Operation Blessing International, a relief organization, said Tuesday it collaborated with defense attorneys and offered Bob McDonnell jobs heading its hunger relief program in Appalachia or working at its orphanage and fish farm in Haiti.

Tuesday is the deadline for lawyers to submit sentencing recommendations. McDonnell faces up to decades in prison, although federal sentencing guidelines likely will call for much less.

Many fellow Republicans, as well as Democrats, have penned letters of support for McDonnell.

His children also sent letters to the judge, asking for lighter sentencing for their father.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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