Anthony Weiner, the disgraced former NY congressman and soon-to-be ex-husband of top Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin, was sentenced today to 21 months in prison for sending obscene material to a 15-year-old high school student in North Carolina.
Weiner pleaded guilty in NY federal court in May to the felony charge over transmitting sexually explicit messages to the North Carolina teenager. Prosecutors recommended a sentence of 21 to 27 months in jail, arguing Weiner's pattern of behavior "suggests a unsafe level of denial and lack of self-control warranting a meaningful incarceratory sentence".
It also became an issue in the closing days of the 2016 presidential election when then-FBI Director James Comey cited emails discovered on a laptop used by Weiner to justify reopening the earlier probe of Clinton's private computer server.
The former NY mayoral candidate is in the midst of a divorce from his wife, Hillary Clinton's former adviser Huma Abedin. He served the New York's 9th congressional district from January 1999 until June 2011, when he resigned after a sexting scandal was made public. Weiner said his Twitter account was hacked and that he did not send the photo.
This was all happening under a veil of secrecy, even though Weiner's personal and professional life had been collapsing around him for half a decade. Two years later, after Weiner had announced that he was running for New York City mayor, screenshots of sexually explicit messages exchanged by Weiner surfaced as well.
He said he was "a very sick man for a very long time" and called his crime his "rock bottom".
Weiner's mayoral campaign imploded after he admitted to having more lewd conversations with women he met on the Internet.
"I knew this was as morally wrong, as it was unlawful", Weiner said at his guilty plea in May.
In May, Abedin filed for divorce around the time Weiner pleaded guilty in the sexting case. His parents were in the courtroom but not his wife, Huma Abedin.
"This is not a letter I ever imagined I would write, but, with Anthony, I have repeatedly found myself in circumstances I never imagined". The resulting film, "Weiner", was released in 2016.
Weiner was also fined $10,000.
Before announcing the sentence, Cote said there was "no evidence of deviant interest in teenagers or minors" on Weiner's part.