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Kirk Douglas asks judge for leniency on grandson’s behalf

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Kirk Douglas, patriarch of the family that includes Oscar-winner Michael Douglas and recently convicted drug trafficker Cameron Douglas, has asked a judge to take it easy on his grandson when delivering the 31-year-old’s sentence later this month, BBC News reports.

The 93-year-old described his visit to see his grandson behind bars: ‘I was gratified to see how well he was taking his incarceration. He had no one to blame but himself. He didn’t express any self-pity, nor did he ask for any. The only sorrow he expressed was for the trouble he had caused others.’

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Cameron Douglas, People reports, faces a “mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years” in prison after pleading guilty Jan. 27 to drug charges -- but the judge has some discretion, the magazine says. Cameron’s attorney is asking for time served plus supervised release, or a sentence of just less than four years that would include drug treatment -- the argument being that his client became a meth middleman only to support his own heroin habit.

A letter from Michael Douglas ...

... was not made public by the court, though the record included input from Catherine Zeta-Jones, who called her stepson ‘an exceptional brother’ to his half-siblings.
Also, a partially redacted appeal from Diandra Douglas, Cameron’s mom, was offered: ‘[T]his is the most painful letter I’ve ever had to write. I am writing to you to plead for leniency in your sentencing of my son, the only blood relative I have left in this world.’ The New York Daily News noted this passage: ‘I must admit that my immediate reaction when I learned of my son’s crime was one of guilt.’ She blamed herself, in part, for mistakes she made raising her son -- whose lawyers have placed blame for Cameron’s drug addiction on his father’s fame.

‘Pappy’ Kirk, at the end of his letter, took aim at the court’s heartstrings: ‘I’m convinced Cameron could be a fine actor. ... I hope I can see that happen before I die. I love Cameron.’

Sentencing is scheduled for April 14.

-- Christie D'Zurilla

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