LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A former Arkansas senator was sentenced to jail and ordered to pay fines in federal court on Friday.
Former Sen. Jeremy Hutchinson received a sentence of 46 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release. Hutchinson must also pay “substantial” restitution, an FBI official said.
Hutchinson pleaded guilty in 2019 to two counts of bribery.
FBI Little Rock special agent in charge, James A. Dawson, described Hutchinson’s crimes.
“Mr. Hutchinson’s criminal actions display a pattern of systemic corruption and casual disregard for American laws. Over several years, Mr. Hutchinson stole thousands of dollars in state campaign contributions for his personal use and then attempted to conceal his crimes,” Dawson said. “Furthermore, Mr. Hutchinson disgraced his office by accepting bribes and other benefits in exchange for pursuing favorable legislation on behalf of several wealthy, corrupt, Arkansas businesses.”
Hutchinson, son of former Sen. Tim Hutchinson and nephew of Gov. Asa Hutchinson, had recently been released from Pulaski County jail after being sent there for failure to pay child support. He had resigned as a state senator after his 2018 federal grand jury bribery and fraud indictment.
He resigned his law license to the state bar in 2019, the same year a second fraud indictment was filed against him in federal court.
In January, former state senator and Jefferson County judge Henry “Hank” Wilkins IV of Pine Bluff was sentenced to 12 months and one day in prison after earlier pleading guilty to his role in a bribery and corruption scheme involving Missouri-based Preferred Family Healthcare.
Hutchinson’s bribery indictments included actions he took on behalf of the Missouri company.
Government attorneys cited the 68-year-old Wilkins’s health and his cooperation with investigators in receiving a shorter sentence compared to Hutchinson. The sentencing memo also stated Hutchinson engaged in multiple bribery and additional fraud schemes in deserving a longer sentence.