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Jesse Jackson Jr. pleads guilty in campaign case - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

Jesse Jackson Jr. pleads guilty in campaign case

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WASHINGTON -

Jessie Jackson Jr. wiped tears from his eyes and looked at his family in the court room as Judge Robert Wilkins read the charges against him.

Jackson, entered a plea by saying, "I am guilty your honor."

And with that statement, the former congressman became a convicted felon.

In separate hearings, both Jackson and his wife plead guilty to charges they spent more than $700,000 in campaign cash on themselves. Items include a $43,000 Rolex watch, $9,000 on furniture and more than $5,000 on expensive clothes.

Jackson Jr. spent 17 years in Congress, but he took a leave of absence last summer and entered treatment for bi-polar disorder.

Jackson made his admission as part of a guilty plea, which included up to 5 years in prison. But Judge Robert Wilkins said several times during the proceedings, that he is not bound by the plea agreement.

Jackson's deal requires him to repay $750,000 in campaign funds, including money he used to for travel and meals with a mistress. He also has to turn over Bruce Lee and Michael Jackson memorabilia he bought, including a $4,000 guitar and a $4,600 fedora.

The couple is expected to be sentenced in the coming weeks.

As a convicted felon, Jessie Jackson Jr. had to give up his right to vote.

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