Former Secretary of State Dianna Duran won’t back out of a plea agreement that led to a 30-day jail sentence, which means she’ll be incarcerated beginning Friday.
“With the same resolve with which Ms. Duran swiftly accepted responsibility, she will accept the sentence of the court,” Duran’s attorney, Erlinda Ocampo Johnson, told NMPolitics.net.
Duran, who illegally used campaign funds to keep her personal bank account in the black while gambling at New Mexico casinos, had until noon Wednesday to decide whether to accept the sentence or reject the plea agreement and proceed to trial.
Duran pleaded guilty in October to six of 65 charges she faced, including embezzlement and money laundering. Two of the charges to which Duran admitted are felonies. The other four are misdemeanors. As part of her plea agreement, she also resigned from her position as secretary of state.
District Judge T. Glenn Ellington on Monday sentenced Duran to 30 days in jail and rejected a request that her incarceration begin after Christmas.
As part of her sentence, Ellington ordered Duran to pay $14,000 in fines and an additional $13,866 in restitution to her campaign contributors — the victims in the case. She must continue counseling for a gambling addiction. She must stay out of all gambling establishments for a period of 2-3 years, with GPS monitoring confirming that she does.
Duran must also complete 2,000 hours of community service over the next five years that doesn’t involve raising funds or managing finances for any charitable organization. She must write letters of apology to her campaign contributors and the State of New Mexico. And she must speak publicly about her crimes.
If Duran fails to complete those requirements, she could face an additional 7.5 years in prison.