Chaka Fattah surrendered to a Pennsylvania prison Wednesday to serve a ten year term for racketeering.
He was convicted in June.
Fattah reported to the Federal Correctional Institution, McKean in Lewis Run in western Pennsylvania near the New York border at 11:02 a.m.
The day before he began his sentence, Fattah sat down exclusively with Action News:
The veteran Philadelphia congressman remains incredibly upbeat for someone who has fallen so far from grace in Philadelphia and in the nation's capital where he was once a major player.
He says it remains a part of his legacy.
"I don't think anyone should cry over me. I had an extraordinary life. I helped tens of millions of people that even my critics admit I've helped. That I've sent more people to college than any other lawmaker in the country," Fattah said.
Fattah continues to say he did not commit any crimes and the federal government is railroading him because he was too powerful and unnamed elements were out to nail him.
"My attorneys have filed an appeal in which we say that there's insufficient evidence for each and every one of these charges," Fattah said.
Fattah continues to believe he will be a free man when the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals reviews his case.
"We're taking the position that it's a wrongful conviction. So I can't say what went wrong when my position is that we are seeking relief on appeal," Fattah said.
It is a very tough time for Fattah and his family. His son is serving time in a federal prison in Michigan. He has an appeal of his conviction coming up in March.
"I talk to him every day. He's doing well," Fattah said.
At age 60, Fattah will report to a medium security federal pen in McKean County, but he continues to look at the bright side.
"None of us get out of this without some challenging days, so whether that's one day or ten years or whatever is in between, you'll never hear me be anything other than upbeat," Fattah said.
Action News Exclusive: Chaka Fattah's day before prison interview