Tallahassee businessman J.T. Burnette was sentenced to three years in prison earlier this week over public corruption charges. Burnette will also have to pay a $1.25 million fine.
He was found guilty on five charges including extortion and bribery during his trial in August.
Federal prosecutors are seeking a hefty fine for J.T. Burnette after he was found guilty on five public corruption charges in August. The government issued a memo saying Burnette participated in extortion and bribery for so long and was unremorseful that the sentence should be extended.
On Wednesday U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle sentenced former Mayor and Tallahassee City Commissioner Scott Maddox to five years in federal prison after he pleaded guilty to charges related to public corruption. Maddox was also the head of the Florida Democratic Party in 2003.
Maddox business associate, Paige Carte-Smith, was sentenced to two years for her role in the corruption scheme.
Judge Hinkle said Maddox and Carter-Smith were entitled to sentences below federal guidelines due to assistance offered to federal officials. Federal sentencing guidelines called for 5-7 years for Maddox and Carter-Smith.
During the trial of Tallahassee businessman J.T. Burnette, who has been found guilty of five public corruption charges, a secret audio file was played for jurors where Burnette bragged about how a political relationship led to his then-girlfriend, Kim Rivers, acquired a vertically integrated license to operate Trulieve in Florida.
Trulieve was one of the first medical cannabis dispensaries in Florida growing to now 85 stores, and a total of 90 stores nationally. On their website, they claim to have 48 percent of Florida’s “seed-to-sale” operation.
The U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Ohio announced on Thursday that FirstEnergy, the energy company at the center of a public corruption investigation, was charged federally with conspiring to commit honest services wire fraud and has agreed to pay a $230 million monetary penalty.