New York's Robert Sand, a 50-year-old father, pleaded guilty yesterday to owing more than $1.2 million to his 3 children from 2 failed marriages. According to assistant Unite States Attorney Alan Bode, Sand's child support orders, which were issued on Long Island, have been owed since at least 2002. The $1.2 million includes interest and penalties on top of the debt. Sand has been dubbed the government's number one deadbeat parent for good reason.
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According to what he admitted in court, Sand had fled first to Florida and then to Thailand. After working an assortment of odd jobs in Thailand, Sand flew to the Philippines where he was arrested and deported for lack of proper paperwork. He was sent to Los Angeles, arrested by federal marshals, and extradited to New York and has been held since December without bail. Sand's attorney, Glenn Obedin said that his client had grown tired of living on the run and contacted authorities late last year. "He had enough and wanted to come back and have the opportunity to make it right," Obedin told reporters. United States Attorney Loretta Lynch released a statement contradicting Obedin, saying, "Neither court orders nor the familial bond meant anything to him as he fled to avoid his obligations." Robert Sand is looking at up to four years in prison when he is sentenced in May. Obedin said that in the past Sand had worked as a car salesman and has an offer to return to that field when he is released.
Sand's 2 ex-wives and mothers of his 3 children were not present in the courtroom. Obedin informed the press that they have been contacted and claimed their priority is for Robert Sand to be free in order to earn a living to repay his debt. Sand has waived his right to appeal his guilty plea and is required to make a full repayment of his debts. After abandoning his 3 children for years, it looks like Robert Sand is ready to literally pay for his crimes. His children were not present during Thursday's courtroom hearing either.
Is paying back the money punishment enough for Sands? The 4-year stint in prison will definitely add to the punishment but will it suffice? What do you think? Do you think that Robert Sand stopped running on his own accord, or was he just caught? Is he really the number one deadbeat parent?