Just when it must have seemed things couldn’t get any worse for former congressman Jesse Jackson and his wife, Sandi, they did on Friday.
Federal prosecutors announced in Washington they want to include the Jacksons' two homes in forfeiture proceedings as they seek $750,000 in what even the one-time power couple admit were ill-gotten gains.
Prosecutors said they would not try to kick the couple and their children out of their homes. Rather, they insist they are only seeking whatever equity the Jacksons have in those homes.
Jackson did not contest the fact that he and his wife had paid off personal credit cards and bought thousands of dollars in personal items with campaign funds, including memorabilia related to stars like Bruce Lee, Michael Jackson, and Jimi Hendrix. But prosecutors said in a motion filed Friday that of 24 items worth some $61,910 which they have demanded that Jackson surrender, he has only turned over 12 items, purchased for $21,155.
“If and when the defendant turns over the remaining items, they will be sold,” prosecutors wrote. “However, the sale of those items will not satisfy the money judgment.”
Prosecutors say they also are seeking forfeiture of an IRA account, worth nearly $80,000.
Late Friday, the US Attorney’s office in Washington released a statement, saying they are not seeking to evict the former congressman and his wife from their homes.
“The government is not trying to take over the properties from Jesse L. Jackson, Jr. but is acting to protect its interest in securing the money judgment that the defendant has been ordered to pay,” the statement said. “ The motion filed by the government today seeks to forfeit the defendant’s interest in the two properties in the event that they are sold.”
The Jacksons are to be sentenced in Federal Court in Washington July 3.