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Disgraced politician Leland Yee gets five years in prison

By Matthew Handrahan

Disgraced politician Leland Yee gets five years in prison

Thu 25 Feb 2016 10:34am GMT / 5:34am EST / 2:34am PST

"Haunted" former senator who crusaded against the games industry found guilty of corruption

Leland Yee has been sentenced to five years in prison, the presiding judge condemning the former California State Senator for doing, "serious, serious injury to a governmental institution."

During his time in politics, Yee was a frequent and fervent critic of the game industry, who used his power and influence to attempt to tighten regulations around the sale of video games in the US.

Yee was arrested on public corruption charges in May 2014, the result of a long process that started in with an FBI investigation into crime in San Francisco's Chinatown about five years before. Ultimately, Yee was exposed for exchanging his political clout for bribes. According to a report from the San Jose Mercury, that included an NFL team and a medicinal marijuana startup.

Yesterday, US District Judge Charles Breyer sentenced Yee to five years in prison, rejecting his pleas for leniency on the grounds that his crimes constituted a, "violation of the public trust."

"The crimes that you committed have resulted in essentially an attack on democratic institutions," Breyer said. "This is a serious, serious injury to a governmental institution."

A visibly emotional Yee admitted feelings of shame for the decisions he made, while also accepting full responsibility. "That will haunt me the rest of my life," he said.

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Andreia Quinta Creative & People Photographer, Studio52 London

269 759 2.8
Popular Comment
Nothing worse than [corrupted] suits in high positions of power. Good riddance.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Andreia Quinta on 25th February 2016 1:28pm

Posted:7 months ago


Petter Solberg Freelance Writer & Artist,

82 68 0.8
Two words: Poetic justice

Posted:7 months ago


Axel Cushing Games Editor

126 155 1.2
Five years, probably out in three, doing time in a minimum security prison. He'll be back. If Marion Berry could get re-elected as mayor of D.C. after a drug bust, Lee could very likely be running again around 2020.

Posted:7 months ago


Paul Jace Merchandiser

1,193 2,031 1.7
Popular Comment
As part of his jail sentence they should tell him he has to beat the Nes versions of Battletoads, Ninja Gaiden 1-3 and Ghost and Goblins(no cheat codes allowed). If he can't beat them during his initial sentence he should get an additional 5 years tacked on....for each game he can't beat.

Posted:7 months ago


John Owens CEO, Wee Man Studios Ltd

1,035 1,355 1.3
Apparently he was a big fan of Anita Sarkeesian.

Posted:7 months ago


Peter Ridgway Technical Art Director, Microsoft / Rare

2 11 5.5
He did have some sensible points in his criticism of game ratings and as with many things, there is always room for improvement. But the aggressive stance he took seemed more about "peacocking" and self promotion that trying to actively engage with the issue. I don't like gloating, but I think its only right to have a bit of a smirk, He pockets bribes whilst complaining that the games industry is derogatory to society... tut tut.

Posted:7 months ago


Gary LaRochelle Digital Artist/Game Designer, Flea Ranch Games

107 145 1.4

Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,606 1,683 0.6
@Paul: Better yet: they should stick a Donkey Kong machine in his cell and let him have at it. I think that game would break anyone who thinks it looks simple to beat...

Posted:7 months ago


Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing

1,492 1,886 1.3
Interesting, you still trust his hate of video games to have been honest. I don't, the picture clearly shows his gamer credit by at least holding up three violent games instead of a trucking simulator, a bootleg copy of Mike Tyson's Tetris and a Bob Ross DVD. Then again, I sometimes wonder whether cavemen had discussions about the youth corrupting properties of cave paintings depicting violent acts, so take that deduction with a grain of salt.

Posted:7 months ago


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