A Louisiana couple convicted of illegally exporting oil field equipment to Libya were both sentenced Wednesday to one year and a day in prison and fined $25,000.
U.S. District Judge Rudi M. Brewster ordered George Smith, 50, and his wife Cheryl, 37, freed on $100,000 bond each pending the outcome of their appeal. They were expected to be released Wednesday night.
The Smiths have been in custody since Dec. 4, when a jury found them guilty of an 11-count federal indictment that included charges of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. government through the illegal export of goods, and making false statements to conceal the exports. The Smiths and a Scottish accomplice are the only people ever charged with violating an embargo on trade with Libya.
Brewster also gave each a 30-year suspended sentence and ordered that their one-year terms be served at different times so that one of them will be at home to care for Cheryl Smith's 17-year-old son from a previous marriage.