Igor Fruman, one of Rudy Giuliani’s former associates sentenced to a year and a day in campaign finance case
U.S. District Judge Paul Oetken said it was a “serious violation” and punishment was needed.
“Our democracy is fragile and depends on people believing in it,” Oetken said.
The sentence was less than what federal prosecutors considered an appropriate sentence for Fruman’s “central role” in the scheme. Prosecutor Hagan Scotten asked the judge to sentence Fruman within the sentencing guidelines range of 37 to 46 months, citing the “serious damage” his actions have done to public confidence in a fair electoral system.
Prosecutors also asked for a fine ranging from $15,000 to $150,000.
In a statement read to the court, Fruman said: “Over the past 835 days, I have had the opportunity to reflect on my actions that brought me before you. It is a shame that will live with me forever. , but I can assure you, my family, and the government that I will never again appear before you or any other courtroom.” He ended by thanking Oetken, and he was accompanied by his four children and walked out of the courtroom with his arm around his young daughter.
Todd Blanche, a lawyer for Fruman, said in a statement that his client “is relieved to now be able to put the last few years behind him and get back to working and supporting his family in the country he loves.”
Prior to Friday’s sentencing, Fruman’s lawyers had tried to distinguish his case from other efforts to influence the election results.
“This is not a case of Mr. Fruman embarking on an effort to influence the outcome of the US election using foreign money,” they wrote in a court filing. “Mr. Fruman solicited money from a foreign national to start a business which included a business strategy of supporting politicians to gain visibility. Although this solicitation is something Mr. Fruman should not have done , it is distinct from solicitation cases where the defendant’s primary objective is to influence elections using foreign money.”
This story was updated with additional information on Friday.