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Updated: Judge Sentences Former State Sen. Jane Orie to Prison

The ex-state senator was convicted in March of using state-funded staff for political work.

Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas Judge Jeffrey A. Manning sentenced former state Sen. Jane Orie to between 2 1/2 to 10 years in prison on corruption charges, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.

Orie made no statement and was immediately taken into custody after today’s sentencing hearing in Downtown Pittsburgh.

Restitution will be decided within 30 days based on legal briefs not yet submitted, the Post-Gazette reports.

Manning told Orie that one of the most solemn oaths she took as an attorney was to "use no falsehood," reports KDKA.

He said forgery and tampering with evidence introduced by her in a judicial proceeding cannot be a more "flagrant and disgraceful" violation of that oath, according to KDKA.

Orie, 50, was convicted in March of five felony counts involving theft of service and conflict of interest for using her staff to perform political fundraising and campaign work and nine related misdemeanors.

The Republican lawmaker from the 40th District seat, which includes Pine, Richland and Ross townships in Allegheny County and the Cranberry area in Butler County.

The district attorney’s office asked Manning to order Orie to pay $780,000 in damages related to her conviction.

The money is in addition to the $1.2 million prosecutors want Orie to repay to the Pennsylvania Senate for defending the case. The prosecution is also asking Orie to forfeit $200,000 from her campaign finance account and her pension. 

According to court filings, Orie's attorney William Costopoulos said the former senator’s restitution should be $25,000 and that Orie should not be responsible for caucus legal bills.

Check back with Patch for updates to this story.

Zenewicz Graphics May 07, 2013 at 05:04 PM
I hope Jane Orie doesn't serve more than 2-1/2 years. What she did was wrong, however, in the political ring I think it had become an accepted way of doing things. Hopefully things will change now that this has been publicized and not an accepted way of conducting political races. The voters will remember.

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