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Leniency urged for former Arizona lawmaker

PHOENIX – An Arizona congressman is among those urging leniency for a
former state legislator potentially facing many years in prison for defrauding a
charity he formerly headed of nearly $145,000.

Richard Miranda is to be sentenced Monday by U.S. District Judge Roslyn Silver
on the Tolleson Democrat’s March 14 guilty plea to federal charges of wire fraud
and tax evasion.

Miranda’s defense lawyer recently presented the judge with 18 letters that
generally urged leniency for Miranda.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Ed Pastor wrote that Miranda knows he made a grievous
mistake and that Miranda warrants consideration of leniency because of his
extensive community service.

Four current and former legislators also wrote letters on Miranda’s behalf.

The Justice Department has said Miranda could be sentenced to up to 25 years in