David Samson, famed for his ‘Chairman’s Flight’ gets a soft landing

David Samson, who had previously pleaded guilty to coercing United Airlines into running a route he personally wanted even though it was not profitable (the “Chairman’s Flight”), was sentenced today to a year of home confinement, four years of probation and 3,600 hours of community service. In addition to having already lost his law license, he will be required to pay a $100,000 fine and wear a location monitoring device. Judge Linares said, “It was a complete abuse of power. It was corruption that is not to be tolerated.”

Samson’s crime carried a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and $250,000 fine. The prosecutor had recommended a two-year sentence. The judge granted a softer landing than most anticipated because of Samson’s “age, poor health, and letters of support from prominent individuals.”

Samson was a former NJ Attorney-General, Managing Partner of a prestigious law firm, close friend Governor Christie, and former Chair of the NY/NJ Port Authority. He is the fourth once ally of Gov. Christie to be convicted or to plead guilty to charges that arose from Bridgegate investigations.

Comments (2)

  1. ken bank

    I’ve always been against putting non-violent offenders in jail. Home confinement, community service, a stiff fine, probation etc. seems to me sufficient. He has already been disbarred and disgraced. Punishment should fit the crime, and I don’t see where the crime in this instance justifies throwing him in jail at taxpayer expense. Athletes who beat up their wives, girlfriends and kids, and do a lot worse things get nothing more than a slap on the wrist and suspended a few games. How long before Jeurys Familia, who beat up his wife, will be pitching for the Mets again?

  2. Bill Orr (Post author)

    I agree that we generally should not put non-violent offenders in jail. The U.S. in comparison with other countries is an embarrassment in terms of the number of incarcerated. However, I am less supportive when those involved take advantage of their wealth, connections, and power to serve only their greedy and corrupt wishes.


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