Former Southampton Town Councilman Bradley Bender was sentenced to 24 months in prison and three years’ probation Friday morning following his guilty plea in November to conspiracy to illegally distribute oxycodone.
Mr. Bender, who will now surrender at noon Sept. 15, was before Judge Arthur Spatt at U.S. Eastern District Court of New York in Central Islip.
Mr. Bender apologized for his actions in court prior to the sentencing, offering a tearful plea to the judge.
“I lost my job, my marriage and my reputation, but alas, I received the help to break my addiction,” Mr. Bender said in court.
Judge Spatt called Mr. Bender’s actions a “serious offense.”
“A councilman, an elected official getting involved with something like this? That’s outrageous,” he said.
The judge added that since Mr. Bender has no prior criminal history, he had no reason to believe he would commit any more crimes.
Mr. Bender said in court that he has been sober for more than seven months. His attorney, Brian J. DeSesa, said prior to the sentencing that any jail time would break the foundation of Mr. Bender’s sobriety.
Mr. Bender has already paid $5,000 in forfeiture money he was ordered to pay before his sentencing, court records show.
Riverhead Physician Assistant Michael Troyan, who allegedly prescribed the pills to Mr. Bender and has been charged in a he admitted to operating out of East End Urgent and Primary Care on East Main Street, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute oxycodone last Friday. Prosecutors in his case have recommended a minimum of nine years in prison without the possibility of parole.
Mr. DeSesa previously told the News-Review Mr. Bender became addicted to prescription pills Mr. Troyan legally prescribed him following an injury four years ago. Mr. Bender admitted in court to exchanging the oxycodone pills for cash and steroids with another co-conspirator.
Mr. Bender resigned from his Town Board post the morning of his arrest Nov. 24.
He declined to comment outside court Friday following the sentencing.
Caption: Attorney Brian DeSesa, left, and client Bradley Bender exit Eastern District Court on the morning of Mr Bender’s arrest. (Credit: Joe Werkmeister, file)