Feds counter Corrine Brown's latest request for sentencing delay

Former congresswoman scheduled to be sentence Nov. 16

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Late Wednesday, federal prosecutors responded to former U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown's second request to delay her sentencing on a conviction on multiple counts of fraud and other charges, calling the request "bare bones" and lacking specific reasons for the delay

In a motion filed Wednesday, Brown's attorney said she is being evaluated for certain medical, mental and emotional conditions that could have an impact on her sentencing, currently set for Nov. 16.

In response, prosecutors said these medical, mental and emotional issues were never mentioned to the probation officer who completed a presentencing report last month.

Judge Timothy Corrigan must rule on Brown's latest request for a delay.

Last week, attorney James Smith filed a motion asking the court to delay the scheduled sentencing, stating they needed more time to prepare for sentencing after Brown’s home was damaged in Hurricane Irma.  The motion asked for a delay of nearly four months. Corrigan denied that request, saying the defendant had not explained why the delay of at least four months was justified.

A source told the I-TEAM that a court officer is expected to recommend Brown, 70, be ordered to serve seven to nine years in federal prison, for taking money raised for the One Door for Education Foundation and lying on her taxes and congressional financial disclosure forms.

In the defense's section motion, Smith wrote that the presentence report, which was prepared by a federal probation officer and released Oct. 12, recommends a “significant and lengthy prison time,” while Brown is seeking a sentence of probation.  Smith states that he has the task of developing mitigating circumstances for sentencing.

The motion then states that the presentence report doesn’t have enough information about Brown’s medical and physical condition, adding that she is still “undergoing testing and evaluation by physicians.”  Smith suggests that the findings would be significant with regard to Brown’s sentencing.  The motion makes similar arguments with regard to Brown’s mental and emotional condition, and states she is “still undergoing evaluative treatment regarding the implications of certain abnormalities.”

Smith also argues that the presentence report doesn’t contain enough information about Brown’s history of charitable service and history of good works prior to her indictment in connection with One Door for Education. The motion argues that numerous documents related to that history were destroyed at Brown’s home in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, and that more time is needed to reconstruct those documents, or to recreate the documentation through interviews.

The motion also addresses the condition of Brown’s home itself, which was “extensively damaged during Hurricane Irma.”  It states she has not been able to live in her home, has been trying to repair the home and needs more time to finish that process.

Smith states he has notified federal prosecutors of this new request, and said they object to the delay.  Prosecutors objected to the first request for a delay as well.