Former Republican New York Rep. Chris Collins received a 26-month sentence Friday for insider trading.
Judge Vernon Broderick ruled on the case in a Manhattan federal court and also fined the former congressman $200,000 in an emotional verdict that saw Collins burst into tears, Politico reported.
Collins had pleaded guilty last October to insider trading after being charged with securities fraud, wire fraud and lying to the FBI. He had resigned from his Congressional seat at the same time. (RELATED: GOP Congressman Collins Charged With Insider Trading)
“I violated my core values and there is no excuse,” Collins told the court. “What I have done has marked me for life.”
The congressman enjoyed a high profile career before the scandal as the first House Republican to publicly support Donald Trump for president.
The insider trading accusation surrounded Collins’ seat on the board of an Australian biotech company and his sharing of confidential information regarding the firm with his son Cameron Collins and another family member. The tip enabled the son and his fiancee’s father to sell Innate Immunotherapeutics stock before it crashed, potentially losing them hundreds of thousands of dollars in value. (RELATED: Media Coverage Of Rep. Chris Collins Indictment Vs. Sen. Mendendez’s Trial)
“My life has been shattered, my reputation has been shattered but worse my family has been shattered,” Collins said, according to Politico.
Collins had asked to avoid prison by being placed on probation but Broderick said the additional punishment would provide deterrence. He rejected Collins’ position that he had committed a crime of emotion.
“I don’t view this as a spur of the moment loss of judgment,” Broderick said.
Collins could be facing 10 years in a penitentiary but a plea deal greatly reduced that sentence.
Prosecutors were nonetheless asking for a sentence of 46 to 57 months because Collins had abused the public trust, Politico reported.
“Collins’s decision to break the law while making the law — a decision that he made twice, ten months apart — was brazen,” read a memo signed by Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman, who added that Collins acted as if “those in power who make the laws are not required to follow them.”