Sandi Jackson released from federal prison

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Former U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. and his wife, Sandi Jackson, are shown arriving at federal court in Washington in 2013. | AP file photo

WASHINGTON — Former Chicago Ald. Sandi Jackson, the wife of former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., has been released from a federal prison, according to Bureau of Prisons records.

Sandi Jackson, who turned 53 on Wednesday, had been serving her one-year sentence in a West Virginia facility and had been scheduled for release on Oct. 18, records show. It is a common practice for federal prisoners to be sent to a halfway house near the end of the sentence.

Jackson arrived at Alderson, a minimum-security federal prison camp in southern West Virginia, on Oct. 20, 2015.

Sandi and Jesse Jackson both pleaded guilty in August 2013 to various schemes relating to the looting of his campaign war chest. The one-time South Side 7th Ward alderman and the former 2nd Congressional District lawmaker were sent to prison for diverting $750,000 from campaign funds for personal use between 2005 and 2012. They spent the money on lavish items and mundane personal expenses.

Sandi Jackson pleaded guilty to filing a false federal income tax return. Jesse Jackson Jr. pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit false statements and mail and wire fraud.

Jesse Jackson Jr. was handed a 30-month sentence. With time off for good behavior and completion of a substance-abuse program, he served only 23 months, wrapping up on Sept. 18, 2015, and returning to Washington, D.C., where the couple own a home in the DuPont Circle neighborhood. A judge allowed the Jacksons’ to stagger their sentences so one parent could remain with their son and daughter.

Sandi Jackson had been Jesse Jackson Jr.’s campaign fund treasurer from January 2005 to November 2006. Starting in 2008, Sandi Jackson was paid $60,000 a year to be a paid consultant to her husband’s campaign. In 2011, she was the campaign manager.

U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson said at Sandi Jackson’s sentencing, “You are standing here today to be sentenced because of your own significant and repeated involvement in the illegal conduct and the falsifications that brought the unreported income into your checking account in the first place.”

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