ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - The former chairman of the Republican Party of Florida was sentenced to one and a half years for stealing more than $125,000 in party funds.
Jim Greer was sentenced in Orlando Wednesday, more than a month after he pleaded guilty to four counts of theft and a single count of money laundering. Circuit Judge Marc Lubet handed down a sentence that was less severe than the 3 1/2 years in prison requested by prosecutors.
A trial had threatened to expose the underbelly of Florida's dominant political party and its formerly high-spending ways.
Topics covered in pretrial depositions included allegations of prostitutes at a state GOP fundraiser in the Bahamas, the drinking habits of former Gov. Charlie Crist and intraparty strife.
Prosecutors say Greer funneled almost $200,000 to a company he had formed with his right-hand man and kept $125,000 for himself.
State Attorney General Pam Bondi released a statement on the proceedings. "We strongly argued that this convicted criminal be sentenced to a harsher prison sentence," she said, "Nonetheless, the Office of Statewide Prosecution did an excellent job prosecuting this case."