Required Prison Time Sunk John Edwards Plea Deal


Just before former Sen. John Edwards (D-NC) was indicted Friday, prosecutors made a final offer: They would accept his guilty plea to three misdemeanor campaign finance law violations in the $925,000 cover-up of his affair. With the deal, reports the Raleigh News & Observer, the former vice-presidential nominee would avoid a felony conviction – and almost certainly keep the law license that had made him wealthy.

The government wanted to dictate a sentence that would result in up to six months of prison for Edwards. He and his lawyers wanted the ability to argue to a judge for alternatives, such as a halfway house, weekend releases, home arrest, or some arrangement that would allow Edwards to be with his school-age children. He is a single parent after the death of his wife, Elizabeth, in December.

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