Federal prosecutors in Jacksonville are asking the judge in the case involving former U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown to reject her request to remain free while she appeals her conviction on fraud and tax crimes.
The Florida Times-Union reports that prosecutors filed a motion Sunday claiming Brown’s request “is without merit and should be denied.”
Brown, 71, was convicted on 18 felony counts that stemmed from her raising about $800,000 for a charity that Brown claimed was intended to be used to help poor students, but prosecutors argued was actually used by Brown as a personal slush fund.
Earlier this month, U.S. District Judge Timothy Corrigan sentenced Brown to five years in federal prison. Corrigan ordered Brown to report to prison no sooner than Jan. 8. The federal Bureau of Prisons will let her known when and which prison to report.
Brown’s attorney has asked that his client be allowed to remain free pending an appeal.
Her attorney, James Smith, is using the dismissal of a juror as the basis of the appeal. The juror was let go after he confirmed to the judge that he told his fellow jurors on the first day of deliberations that the “Holy Spirit” had told him Brown was not guilty of charges against her.
In the motion filed Sunday by acting U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow, the prosecution argues the juror was dismissed because he did not follow the court’s instructions and insist that the incident does not present a “substantial question of law or fact” which is required for an appeal.
“In the absence of such a question, Corrine Brown should be imprisoned during the pendency of her appeal.
“As to the law, it is beyond dispute that a trial court can (and should) remove a juror based on findings that the juror has failed to follow, and is unable to follow, the court’s lawful instructions,” prosecutors also said in their motion.