Convicted Child Pornographers Say Former Subway Pitchman Jared Fogle's Proposed Sentence is Too Light
Former Subway spokesman expects five to twelve-and-a-half years in prison
Two convicted child pornographers are calling for Jared Fogle to serve a longer prison term, saying the former Subway spokesperson’s plea deal is “ludicrous” and “a slap in the face to the child victims.”
Under the conditions of a plea deal Fogle agreed to, prosecutors agreed to ask for no more than twelve-and-a-half years in prison while Fogle’s attorneys said they would seek no less than five years. Fogle agreed to plead guilty to one count of receiving and distributing child porn and one count of traveling across state lines for sex with minors.
He is scheduled to be sentenced in a federal court in Indiana on Nov. 19 in the case, which shocked the nation, led to the end of his association with Subway and the end of his marriage to wife Katie, who filed for divorce on the day Fogle’s plea deal was announced.
Fogle has admitted to having sex with at least two underage prostitutes and to obtaining child pornography of 12 other children as young as 6 years old, according to court documents.
Those crimes deserve a harsh penalty, according to Thomas Ford, who said he is serving 198 months in prison on one count of distribution of child pornography. Ford said that the proposed sentence for Fogle is a “slap in the face” to both victims and offenders convicted of “non-contact sex offenses,” he wrote in a letter to a judge in Fogle’s case, which was obtained by PEOPLE. “Just the fact that he has 14 VICTIMS is enough to consider a sentence far and away more appropriate,” the letter read.
Another federal prisoner, Scott Petrie, who wrote in a letter obtained by PEOPLE that he was serving a 40-year sentence for trading child porn, said that he and other sex offenders he knows were sentenced to more than 30 years “for acts less than what Mr. Fogle did.”
But prosecutors believe the negotiated prison range, which a judge is not bound by and can disregard in favor of more or less prison time, is fair.
“Given the facts of the case and the severity of what he did, we believe the sentencing range is appropriate,” Tim Horty, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Indianapolis, tells PEOPLE.
Douglas Berman, a law professor at Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law who has co-authored a book on sentencing laws, tells PEOPLE that Fogle’s sentence “seems to be kind of in the middle of the extremes of the kinds of sex offenders who get brought into federal court.” Those extremes, Berman says, range from people who rape small children to those who look at illegal pornography without physical contact with others. Given this, Berman believes Fogle’s sentence “seems reasonable.”
In another development, a judge has granted Fogle’s request to leave home confinement and travel outside the Indianapolis area for evaluation of sex disorders, though the location and timing will remain secret, according to court records obtained by PEOPLE.
Fogle has admitted “that he requires significant psychiatric medical treatment and counseling,” his attorney Jeremy Margolis said after his August court appearance. Margolis noted that Fogle has already been “extensively examined by a world-renowned expert in sexual conditions.”
The expert wasn’t identified, but the fact that Fogle would leave the area for such treatment isn’t necessarily unusual, Maia Christopher, executive director of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers, tells PEOPLE.
“It may be as simple as wanting some privacy,” Christopher says.
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