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District Court judge sentences Arredondo to probation (access required)

District Court judge sentences Arredondo to probation <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Former Democratic lawmaker Ben Arredondo walked out of court Wednesday effectively a free man, having convinced a federal judge his lifetime of community service and failing mental and physical health justify no time behind bars.

Judge Frederick Martone, of U.S. District Court in Phoenix, placed Arredondo on three years of probation, including 18 months of house arrest, and ordered him to pay $540 in restitution.

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Using good for ill… twice

A federal prosecutor is trying to convince US District Court Judge Frank Martone that Arredondo’s history of charitable deeds and community service is not worthy of leniency during his Jan. 23 sentencing for his guilty pleas to counts of honest services mail fraud and mail fraud.

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Arredondo argues for lighter punishment (access required)

Arredondo argues for lighter punishment <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Former Rep. Ben Arredondo's attorney, Lee Stein, has filed a plea asking that the federal government’s use of “inflated” ticket prices would unfairly increase the severity of his bribery sentence. Stein argued that prosecutors should be using face value and season ticket values rather than what the FBI paid when they purchased the tickets from scalpers.

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Who’s hot, who’s not: A year of ups and downs for Arizona politicos (access required)

Who’s hot, who’s not: A year of ups and downs for Arizona politicos <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

As 2012 comes to a close, some Arizona politicos have reached new heights of prominence and power. Others saw once-promising careers hit the wall.

Jeff Flake and Kyrsten Sinema gained influence and stature in the nation’s capital, while Andy Biggs reached the pinnacle of power in the Arizona Senate.

Meanwhile, former Senate President Russell Pearce and his successor, Sen. Steve Pierce, fell from grace, while a slew of Republican candidates once again failed in their bids to reach the halls of Congress.

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