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Politics

Duncan Hunter Seeking Prison Delay Because Of Coronavirus Pandemic

Rep. Duncan Hunter arrives at the federal courthouse in downtown San Diego, Dec. 3, 2019.
Alexander Nguyen
Rep. Duncan Hunter arrives at the federal courthouse in downtown San Diego, Dec. 3, 2019.

Attorneys for former Alpine Republican Rep. Duncan D. Hunter and the government filed a motion Tuesday to postpone Hunter’s prison surrender date to next year.

The joint motion filed in the Southern District of California asked the court to extend Hunter’s self-surrender date to Jan. 4, 2021, because of the “ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the unknown impacts of the disease” in the coming months. He was scheduled to surrender this month on May 29.

Motion To Modify Surrender Date
The joint motion to modify the surrender date of former Rep. Duncan Hunter.
To view PDF files, download Acrobat Reader.

In return for the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s support of the motion, Hunter has agreed not to seek to modify his sentence or time credit for the months he is confined to his home prior to surrendering for his prison sentence.

“In light of the unprecedented challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, this is not a time to be adding to the prison population unnecessarily,“ Hunter’s attorney Devin Burstein told KPBS in an email statement.

Hunter was sentenced in December 2019 to 11 months in prison after pleading guilty to stealing campaign funds for personal expenses, including family vacations, outing with friends and his daughter’s birthday party. He resigned from Congress on Jan. 13.

His wife Margaret Hunter, who served as his campaign manager, also pleaded guilty in a separate plea agreement. Her sentencing has been postponed to June 8 because of the ongoing global pandemic. They were charged with 60-counts of misusing campaign funds in 2018.

Duncan Hunter’s father, former Rep. Duncan Lee Hunter, provided the surety that his son will surrender to authorities next January.

U.S. District Judge Thomas J. Whelan has yet to approve the request.