News & Politics

Bob McDonnell Sentenced to Two Years in Prison for Corruption

McDonnell was found guilty on 11 counts of corruption last year.

Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell will spend two years in federal prison after being found guilty on 11 counts of public corruption, a judge in Richmond ordered Tuesday. McDonnell and his now-estranged wife, Maureen, were convicted last September for illegally accepting cash, luxury goods, and vacations from a Virginia businessman looking to use the governor’s office to peddle his nutritional supplement manufacturer.

McDonnell, 60, initially faced as long as ten years behind bars according to federal sentencing guidelines, but the judge today reduced the maximum possible penalty. Maureen McDonnell, who was convicted on eight counts, will be sentenced in February. Jonnie R. Williams, the businessman who furnished the McDonnells with more than $200,000 in cash and merchandise, was granted immunity for his testimony.

The McDonnells’ legal troubles stemmed from their former chef, Todd Schneider, whose falling-out with the former first couple was profiled in the February 2014 issue of Washingtonian.

Bob McDonnell will report to prison February 9. He will be the first former governor of Virginia to serve hard time.

Find Benjamin Freed on Twitter at @brfreed.

Staff Writer

Benjamin Freed joined Washingtonian in August 2013 and covers politics, business, and media. He was previously the editor of DCist and has also written for Washington City Paper, the New York Times, the New Republic, Slate, and BuzzFeed. He lives in Adams Morgan.