Federal judge faces up to 3 years in prison

HOUSTON (AP) - A disgraced federal judge who pleaded guilty to charges related to sexually abusing his secretary returned to court in Houston for sentencing today.

U.S. District Judge Samuel Kent could have received up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine after admitting to obstruction of justice. Prosecutors say they won't seek more than 3 years in prison under a plea agreement with him.

He entered the obstruction plea in February before U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson, a visiting senior judge from Pensacola, Fla. As part of the plea agreement, Kent admitted the sexual contact was against the two women's will.

Kent was on the federal bench for nearly two decades before becoming the first federal judge charged with a sex crime.

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