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Stewart loses appeal of sentence

Associated Press

NEW YORK — A federal judge Monday ordered Martha Stewart to serve her full five months of house arrest, brushing aside claims from the celebrity homemaker that the sentence is damaging her business.

Judge Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum, in a tersely worded three-page order, rejected a bid from Stewart to go free early — or at least to be allowed to leave home more often for work.

“Home detention is imposed as an alternative to imprisonment. It is designed to be confining,” the judge wrote. “I see no reason to modify the sentence.”

Stewart, 63, was convicted last year of lying to the government about a stock sale. She served five months in prison in West Virginia, then in early March began five months of house arrest at her sprawling Westchester County estate, north of New York City.

The homemaking maven had told the judge that serving the rest of her sentence would hamper production of her two upcoming television series — a daytime talk show and a new rendition of NBC’s “The Apprentice.”

Prosecutors had mocked the bid for a shorter sentence, telling the judge in court papers that “minor inconvenience to one’s ability to star in a television show is an insufficient ground for resentencing.”

The judge declined Stewart’s bid to be allowed to leave home 80 hours per week for business. Under the original sentence, she is allowed 48 hours per week.

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