Weinstein originally faced a felony bribery charge but avoided jail time because he cooperated with authorities in prosecuting (aka ratting out) two former guards who admitted to accepting thousands in cash and gifts. His whole plan was to get the guards to provide special treatment to Francis, who was doing time on tax evasion charges.
"One could easily say there should be a short prison sentence here," sad Judge Larry Hicks. "His cooperation and straight forward demeanor spared him that."
Three former deputies have been arrested in this drama. Frank Hawkins was even sentenced to three years in prison and fined $4,000 for accepting cash and gifts.
Wowsa! And Francis' goon gets practically nothing!
"That is a small price to pay for what has occurred here," said the judge, who was more troubled that three career law enforcement officers "lost their jobs and left in disgrace."
The third deputy charged, Michon Mills, was acquitted as she returned the gifts, but the judge saw that the trial "took an incredible toll" on her.
"There is no question in my mind it was the worst experience in her life," continued judge Hicks. "I'm not concerned about Francis, but I am concerned about the impact on these other people. … Those effects were truly chaotic as far as the law enforcement people were concerned."
Joe Francis caused even more trouble while in jail! What an accomplishment.
[Image via WENN.]