LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A former Arkansas judge has been sentenced to five years in federal prison for trading nude pictures and sexual favors from male defendants for granting them dismissals of minor criminal charges.
Joseph Boeckmann, 72, served as a district court judge in Cross County, and admitted at his sentencing on Wednesday that he made these “deals” for seven years, costing cities and municipalities funds, through fines and fees, as well as property, by handing down fraudulent dismissals.
He was on the bench starting in 2009, and ending in 2015 when he stepped down amid the investigation.
Boeckmann would reportedly have defendants come to his home for what he disguised as “community service.” He would then take naked photographs of them or ask them to perform sex acts with him.
According to The Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission, “numerous photos of naked young men bending over after an apparent paddling” were recovered from his hard drive. There were reportedly thousands of photographs of defendants in various states of undress and sexually suggestive poses.
He is said to have targeted young white males, “for the purpose of forming personal, sexual relations with the litigants, thus creating a self-imposed conflict of interest for himself.”
He also admitted to bribing a witness to attempt to obstruct the investigation into his years-long scheme.
The investigation of the case revealed that federal agents had looked into allegations against Boeckmann 20 years ago, but had not brought charges, reports Arkansas Times.
U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker handed down the five year sentence, even though prosecutors had only recommended a sentence of up to three years, explaining that the fact he had corrupted justice while on the bench “sets his crime apart.” She also fined him $50,000, and sentenced him to three years of supervised release after he is done serving his prison term.