New York City mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner speaks to reporters during a press conference where he admitted to sending sexually explicit text messages in New York, USA, July 23, 2013. EPA-EFE FILE/ANDREW KELLY
New York, Sep 25 (efe-epa).- Former New York Congressman Anthony Weiner on Monday was sentenced to 21 months behind bars for sending material with a sexual content – known as “sexting” – to a 15-year-old girl online, authorities said.
Federal District Judge Denise Cote said that a serious crime deserves a serious punishment upon handing down the sentence to the former pol, the prosecution said in a statement.
“The crime I committed was my rock bottom,” Weiner told Cote District Judge Denise Cote. “I was a very sick man for a long period of time, but I am also responsible for the damage I have done. I have no excuse.”
Weiner was ordered to surrender to authorities so that he can be sent to prison on Nov. 6.
Prosecutors had asked for between 21-27 months in prison for the 53-year-old Democrat, who began weeping upon hearing the sentence, having hoped to receive probation.
Weiner, who sought the Democratic nomination for the mayorship of New York in 2013, pleaded guilty in May to a criminal charge of sending obscene material to a minor, hours after turning himself in to the FBI’s New York office.
Upon being brought before a judge at the time, Weiner, who served in Congress from 1999-2011, when he was forced to resign, admitted that he had suffered from “destructive impulses,” adding that he was ill.
The former lawmaker, who had been released on bail and is amid a divorce from close Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin, with whom he has a son, was also sentenced to three years on parole once he leaves prison.
In a letter sent to the judge, Abedin asked for indulgence for Weiner in the name of their son.
The investigation came to light after in September 2016 Britain’s The Daily Mail reported that Weiner had exchanged explicit messages with a minor for months.
Earlier, in 2011, he had resigned his seat in Congress when it was learned that he had been sending messages with a sexual content and photos to different women via the Internet.
That behavior ended his aspirations to become mayor of New York.