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June 23, 2010

Supporters decry while prosecutor defends stiff sentence given to Sholom Rubashkin

Two new pieces highlight two very different perspectives on the very long federal sentence given earlier this week to Sholom Rubashkin for his role in the financial fraud at a former Iowa kosher plant:

From the Huffington Post here, "Supporters Decry 'Horrifying' 27-Year Sentence For Slaughterhouse Chief," which includes this snippet:

In a statement released after the sentence announcement, Agudath Israel, an ultra-Orthodox organization, called it "a dark day" for both American justice and American Jewry.  "While none of us condones any wrongdoing by Mr. Rubashkin, the extraordinary severity of the sentence imposed upon one of our Jewish brothers sends chills of shock and apprehension down our collective spine," the statement reads. "This is a horrifying development."

From the Des Moines Register here, "Prosecutor: Rubashkin deserves his 27-year sentence," which includes this snippet:

Sholom Rubashkin deserves the prison time he received Tuesday in federal court, prosecutors said after a judge sentenced the former eastern Iowa meatpacking executive to 27 years. Bob Teig, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office, said the massive financial fraud scheme at Agriprocessors Inc. "cries out for a sentence like this."... 

Prosecutors, who have seldom spoke publicly since the immigration raid, said the fraud case ranked among the largest ever in Iowa's northern district. "It is a lengthy sentence," Teig said. "But he earned a lengthy sentence.  It's hard to get a 27-year sentence for a white-collar crime. It is very difficult."

Teig said Rubashkin's crimes differed from other high-profile, white-collar cases with lesser sentences because of his actions. U.S. District Judge Linda Reade concluded in her ruling that Rubashkin led the fraud, involved others in the plot and lied at his trial.  Teig said Rubashkin consistently refused to cooperate with authorities.

Related posts on the Rubashkin case:

June 23, 2010 at 11:38 AM | Permalink

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