Joseph Boeckmann, the 72-year-old former district court judge from Wynne, was sentenced Wednesday by federal Judge Kristine Baker to five years in federal prison plus a $50,000 fine by on wire fraud witness tampering charges.
She added time to the government’s recommendation, giving him the maximum sentence under guidelines He’ll have three years of supervised release after the prison sentence. The judge said Boeckmann’s abuse of his office set the case apart.
Boeckmann, who quit the bench after a state judicial discipline investigation that triggered the federal investigation, pleaded guilty to federal charges that said he gave lenient sentences to defendants in his court in return for sexual favors, generally related to male defendants posing for suggestive photographs.
Prosecutors asked for a three-year sentence and a $50,000 fine. His attorney, Jeff Rosenzweig, said Boeckmann was a broken, elderly man and justice would be served by completion of his sentence in home detention.
It developed during the investigation of the case that federal agents had investigated allegations against Boeckmann 20 years ago, but had not brought charges.