A Boston federal judge sentenced Lawrence Novak, a lawyer and former Massachusetts Republican State Committee officer, to seven years and three months in prison for obstruction of justice and money laundering.
Besides the 87 months in prison, District Judge Richard G. Stearns sentenced the 57-year-old Novak of Brockton, Mass., to two years of supervised release, a $20,000 fine and an order to pay $107,000 in forfeiture on May 22. U.S. v. Novak, No. 1:05-cr-10260 (D. Mass.).
Novak pleaded guilty in February to one count of endeavoring to obstruct justice and two counts of money laundering.
The indictment charged Novak with attempting to launder $107,000 of his client's profits from drug sales. Novak also allegedly filed false and misleading documents in Massachusetts state court in an effort to invalidate the client's prior state convictions and secure a shorter federal sentence.
Novak's attorney, William J. Cintolo of Boston-based Cosgrove, Eisenberg & Kiley, said in an e-mailed statement that the sentence was driven by an incorrect application of sentencing guidelines.
"I believe the sentence was way out of proportion to the acts of obstruction Novak was convicted of committing," said Cintolo.
On May 22, Cintolo filed a notice of appeal. U.S. v. Novak, No. 07-1826 (1st Cir.).
"The idea that an attorney would hide and launder illegal drug money is unconscionable and completely undermines our justice system," said Michael K. Loucks, acting U.S. attorney for the District of Massachusetts, in a statement.
"Mr. Novak's actions are an affront to dedicated and hard working attorneys everywhere," Loucks stated.