A Providence man who told investigators that he armed himself because of his “lifestyle” and as a means to protect women who worked for his escort service was sentenced Monday to 70 months in federal prison followed by 3 years of supervised release after pleading guilty to a federal gun charge.

James Lombardi, 26, was arrested by Providence Police in December 2009 and indicted by a federal grand jury in February on a charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm. He pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in July.

The sentence, which was imposed by U.S. District Court Judge William E. Smith, was announced by U.S. Attorney Peter F. Neronha.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephanie S. Browne told the court that the Government was prepared to present evidence that Lombardi acquired a stolen Remington 12 gauge shotgun approximately 3 weeks prior to his arrest. Lombardi told investigators he acquired the shotgun because of his lifestyle. He told police that he ran an escort service based out of a hotel room in Warwick and his home which employed several women.

Lombardi told investigators that when his girlfriend, whom he also employed as an escort, brought clients to their residence he would wait in the basement armed with the shotgun in the event of a problem.

He also admitted to police that he sold heroin during times when the escort service was slow, and that he planned to use the shotgun for protection.

About The Author

John Guilfoil is the editor-in-chief of Blast: Boston's Online Magazine and the Blast Magazine Network. He can be reached at [email protected]. Tweet @johnguilfoil.

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