Jared Fogle might have thought about having sex with minors, but the former Subway pitchman never acted on those thoughts. Not acting on his fantasies is one of the reasons Fogle’s defense attorney believes his client should have his sentence of 16 years reduced by an appellate court. The defense’s arguments are not ones based on innocence as the team of lawyers freely admits Jared Fogle received dozens of sexually suggestive pictures and videos from a former employee. What the defense team is alleging is an argument that might turn the stomach of some, but might also have a strong basis in law.
Fogle’s attorney, according to the Indy Star, stood in front of a federal appeals court and said Jared Fogle did not produce or actively seek out the pictures and videos that were found in his possession when he was arrested. Jared Fogle might have wanted to have sex with children under the age of 16, but he never actually went out of his way to follow through on those fantasies. The attorneys even admit Fogle did engage in some rather depraved acts, but they don’t believe his acts constitute the basis for a nearly 16-year sentence.
Further, the defense team is claiming that U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt went well beyond her discretion when she handed down the 15 years and eight months sentence. That was indeed beyond what the federal prosecutors said they agreed to in a deal with Jared Fogle in return for the former commercial icon to plead guilty. Fogle pleaded guilty to possession or distribution of child pornography and traveling across state lines to have commercial sex with a minor. Because Fogle didn’t actually have sex with a minor, his defense team had asked the judge for a maximum of five years.
Ron Elberger is the attorney that is leading the charge to get Fogle’s sentence reduced. Elberger says the judge ruled more on what Jared Fogle might have done more than what he did. On the flip side, prosecutors have argued that Jared Fogle could have been facing as much as 30 years in prison. Those same lawyers argued that he was not just an innocent observer but rather solicited underage prostitutes in order to play out his lurid fantasies.
The prosecution pointed out that at one point, Fogle confided in a 17-year-old sexual partner that he liked them young. “The younger, the better” according to accusations made by that person. The New York Daily News points out Jared admitted he was keeping pictures on his digital devices. The married father of two also said he’s been engaging in sexual relations with underage prostitutes for about eight years. It is the admission that he was having sex with prostitutes under the age of 18 that is going to be the biggest hangup for the former face of Subway.
The prosecution alleges and Fogle has admitted in part that his rather perverse behavior occurred while he was traveling the globe on behalf of Subway. It is his international travels that had the original judge, as well as authorities, investigating and prosecuting the case so unnerved. It’s likely there will never be a full accounting of what Fogle did when he was traveling the globe. There isn’t expected to be a ruling of the appellate court in the near future, and as of now there isn’t an indication as to how it might rule.
Those who were inside the courtroom during oral arguments said the behavior of the appellate justices wasn’t really a clue as to who was winning the day. There were very few questions asked about the case or the appeal. That could either be good or bad news for Jared Fogle, depending on what the judges feel about the case.
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