GOP operative with Knox County ties sentenced to 2 years for illegal coordination

(Tyler Harber/Google+)

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A Republican political operative has been sentenced to two years in prison for illegally funneling campaign contributions from a super PAC he secretly ran to a congressional campaign he was managing.

Thirty-four-year-old Tyler Harber of Alexandria was sentenced Friday in federal court in Virginia. In February, he became the first person convicted of illegally coordinating campaign contributions between political committees.

Prosecutors asked for nearly four years in prison. Defense lawyers wanted a term of less than two years.

Super PACs can solicit and spend unlimited amounts of money, but they cannot coordinate their activity with specific congressional candidates. Harber was running a Super PAC that spent $325,000 to support the 2012 campaign of northern Virginia Republican Chris Perkins, for whom Harber served as campaign manager.

Harber made headlines in 2006 and 2007. He claimed that while on the county payroll his real job was to do politics for then Mayor Mike Ragsdale. Ragsdale denied the claim, but the claim prompted an investigation and Harber was fired.

Previous story: Tyler Harber case appears to be closed without charges

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