Former Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner was sentenced Monday by New York court to 21 months in prison for engaging in lewd text messages with a teenage girl.
According to reports, Weiner, 53, dropped his head into his hands and wept as a federal judge sentenced him to 21 months behind bars for illicit online contact with a 15-year-old girl, his tears flowing long after the gavel came down on a case he called his “rock bottom.”
In handing down the sentence, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote cited a need in such a highly publicized case to “make a statement that can protect other minors.”
Weiner, 53, served two New York City boroughs from 1999 to 2011. His former wife, Huma Abedin, was an aide to Hillary Clinton while she was secretary of state.
He had pleaded guilty to one count of transferring obscene material to a minor. The conviction carried a potential 10 years in prison.
Weiner must surrender to authorities by Nov. 6.
Once he has completed his prison sentence, must undergo internet monitoring and enroll in a sex-offender treatment program. He also was fined $10,000.
Weiner’s attorneys sought probation, citing his “remarkable progress.” In a letter to the judge, the former congressman acknowledged that his actions ruined his marriage.
Federal prosecutors argued that probation would be inadequate.
“Although the defendant’s self-destructive path from United States congressman to felon is indisputably sad, his crime is serious and his demonstrated need for deterrence is real,” prosecutors wrote to the judge.