U.S. District Court Judge Janet Bond Arterton decided Monday to postpone former Gov. John G. Rowland’s sentencing, which had been scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 7.
Rowland’s attorneys made the request Friday claiming that the government didn’t turn over all of the information it should have based on details disclosed in Lisa Wilson-Foley’s Dec. 29 sentencing memo.
“Ms. Wilson-Foley informed the government prior to her plea that Mr. Foley and Brian Bedard had repeatedly reassured her that Mr. Rowland was performing legitimate work for Apple,” Rowland’s attorney, Reid Weingarten, wrote in the letter. “Ms. Wilson-Foley claims that, based upon these facts, it was not until 2012 — when she says she learned that Mr. Rowland’s payments were ‘not all for true value’ for work at Apple — that she joined the alleged conspiracy.”
If that’s true, Weingarten argues that it’s “entirely consistent with Mr. Rowland’s theory of the case at trial: that there was no conspiracy and that any illicit intent was secreted in Mr. Foley’s mind.”
In September, a jury found Rowland guilty of conspiring to hide from election regulators fees he tried to charge to two congressional campaigns for consulting work. One campaign, Republican Mark Greenberg’s 2010 5th Congressional District bid, eventually rejected the former governor’s offer.
The other campaign, Wilson-Foley’s 2012 bid for the same seat, accepted Rowland’s proposal. Wilson-Foley and her husband, Brian Foley, allegedly arranged to pay him off-the-books through Brian Foley’s nursing home company, Apple Rehab.
Wilson-Foley and her husband pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges in the case last March and are scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 9 and Jan. 13. The government has requested a 10-month prison term for Wilson-Foley and leniency for her husband, who was one of the key witnesses in the trial against Rowland.
U.S. Attorneys Christopher Mattei and Liam Brennan requested jail time for Wilson-Foley because she was uncooperative.
“For whatever reason, Ms. Wilson-Foley seems incapable of candidly admitting what the trial evidence established: in September 2011, she, her husband and Mr. Rowland had an understanding that Mr. Rowland would be paid for campaign work through Apple in order to prevent the public and the FEC from discovering the fact that Mr. Rowland was being paid to assist Ms. Wilson-Foley’s campaign,” they wrote in court documents.
Rowland’s attorney sees it differently.
“Assuming Ms. Wilson-Foley’s representations are accurate and this material was not produced, Mr. Rowland has suffered material prejudice,” Weingarten wrote.
He said a postponement of sentencing is warranted to permit the court to hold a hearing on this issue.