Former labor leader Gary Rodrigues was convicted in 2003.
Rodrigues’ term upheld
A judge rules that the former labor leader must report to prison Jan. 7 as scheduled
Convicted labor leader Gary Rodrigues will report to prison on Jan. 7 as scheduled, a federal judge ruled.
Earlier this month, U.S. District Judge David Ezra denied Rodrigues' request to delay his 64-month prison term until April 1, saying he wasn't swayed by the former labor leader's arguments.
Rodrigues had sought an extension because he plans to file a petition to the U.S. Supreme Court challenging his conviction on 101 felony counts. The defense has vigorously maintained that Rodrigues committed no crime.
Rodrigues and daughter Robin Sabatini were found guilty and sentenced on Sept. 30, 2003, to multiple charges of mail fraud, conspiracy to launder money, health care fraud, theft of union funds and accepting kickbacks from an employee benefit plan. Sabatini was sentenced to 46 months.
Both were allowed to remain free on bail pending the resolution of their appeal to the 9th Circuit. The 9th Circuit affirmed the jury's verdict on June 11.
Ezra affirmed the sentences for both father and daughter on Oct. 31 and ordered them to begin serving their sentence Jan. 7.
Rodrigues sought the extension because he has two pending civil cases in federal court and is due to testify in both cases, which are set for trial on Jan. 15 and March 11, respectively.
Government attorneys had called the request for an extension "yet another delay tactic."
"It is time for this defendant to start serving his prison term," wrote assistant U.S. Attorney Florence Nakakuni in the government's opposition.
Ezra noted that Rodrigues did not meet the statutory requirements for the release of an individual who has been convicted, sentenced and has filed a petition to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The court is required to find that the defendant presented clear and convincing evidence that he is not likely to flee or pose a danger to the community. The court said it did not know the basis for the petition and therefore could not determine whether the appeal would raise any issues that would likely result in a reversal of the verdict.