Prison and parole for Ron Paul aides in campaign finance case-UPDATE

Republican presidential candidate, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, listens as campaign chairman Jesse Benton has a word with him as he signs autographs at the Cass County Community Center in Atlantic, Iowa, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Republican presidential candidate, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, listens as campaign chairman Jesse Benton has a word with him as he signs autographs at the Cass County Community Center in Atlantic, Iowa, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

UPDATE: The third top official of Ron Paul’s 2012 presidential campaign has been sentenced to three months in prison for conspiring to cover up campaign payments to a former Iowa state senator.

Deputy campaign manager Dimitri Kesari was convicted of conspiracy and three charges related to false campaign reporting, the same charges for which a jury convicted the campaign’s chairman Jesse Benton and its manager John Tate.

Kesari’s attorney, Jesse Binnall says the judge found Kesari played more of a roll in arranging and concealing payments to former Sen. Kent Sorenson, who endorsed Paul six days before the 2012 Iowa caucuses.

Benton and Tate were sentenced Tuesday to two years’ probation and six months of home confinement.

The men argued they broke no laws and plan to appeal their convictions.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Three campaign advisers to 2012 presidential candidate Ron Paul are expected to get prison time on charges that allege they conspired to cover up campaign payments to a former Iowa state senator.

Paul campaign chairman Jesse Benton, campaign manager John Tate and deputy manager Dimitri Kesari say they broke no laws when they paid $73,000 to former state Sen. Kent Sorenson, who endorsed Paul six days before the 2012 Iowa caucuses.

Prosecutors say the scheme became illegal when the men tried to hide the payment in federal campaign financial disclosure reports. They were convicted of conspiracy and on three charges related to false campaign reporting.

Benton and Tate will be sentenced Tuesday in federal court in Des Moines. Kesari’s hearing is Wednesday. The men are expected to appeal their convictions.

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