Ex-PA Attorney General Sentenced to Jail for Lying Under Oath, Leaking Docs
Pennsylvania's former top prosecutor has been sentenced to 10 to 23 months in prison, followed by 8 years probation, after being convicted of leaking grand jury documents to the press to retaliate against a rival prosecutor, and then lying under oath about it, CBS-3 reported.
Kathleen Kane, the Keystone State's first Democrat and first woman elected attorney general, offered an emotional plea for house arrest or other similar punishment so that she could be with her two teenage children.
But, Judge Wendy Demchick Alloy denied that request, saying that "When perjury is committed, it is the penultimate violation, it is the ultimate assault on the judicial system," according to the Allentown Morning Call.
Kane was forced by law to resign from office this summer before being sentenced for apparently retaliating against state prosecutor Frank Fina, who had opened an investigation into several Philadelphia-area officials allegedly accepting money from lobbyists.
Kane suspected that Fina was the source of a newspaper report accusing her of shuttering the sting operation, and was accused of leaking grand jury documents to the media about an earlier fraud case that Fina had "abandoned", according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Alloy said Kane then lied under oath to apparently shroud her involvement in the matter.
"This case is about ego, ego of a politician consumed with her image...and instead of focusing solely on the business of fighting crime, her focus was on defeating these perceived enemies," the judge said, the Morning Call reported.
Kane initially gained popularity for her work as assistant district attorney in the Scranton area, and was lauded for her work as attorney general fighting the cartel-linked drug trade in Pennsylvania.
But, Kevin Steele, the district attorney for Montgomery County where her case was prosecuted, said her actions badly tarnished the attorney general's office:
"There were scars. There were good people who... dedicated their lives to law enforcement," Steele said, citing one senior deputy who characterized the attorney general's office as rife with "systematic firings and Nixonian espionage."