Former South Carolina Treasurer Thomas Ravenel has been sentenced to 10 months in Federal prison for a drug conviction, but a judge did not immediately send Ravenel to prison.
U.S. District Judge Joseph F. Anderson Jr. agreed to delay Ravenel going to prison for five months to give prosecutors and defense attorneys time to present more evidence on his cooperation with authorities. The judge says that evidence could possibly lessen his sentence.
Ravenel showed no reaction. In a sentencing report, Anderson says authorities found Ravenel had been using cocaine since he was 18 and his use escalated in the months before he was elected treasurer.
Ravenel was also fined $221,000 and ordered to pay an additional $28,000 to the state as reimbursement for the special legislative session to elect his successor. Ravenel had faced as many as 20 years in prison.
Michael Miller had faced up to 40 years in prison. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess cocaine with the intent to distribute and an additional drug distribution charge unrelated to Ravenel.
Miller received a reduced sentence for cooperating with authorities. His attorney says he will be credited for already serving about three months in jail.
Both Miller and Ravenel have a five month delay on their sentences which means they will report to prison. The judge wanted to wait and see the results of the continuing drug investigation. If any indictments come down during that time, it's possible Miller and Ravenel can have their sentences reduced. The judge did say he felt Ravenel need to spend time in prison.