Bill Cosby SENTENCED.

Bill Cosby
The 81-year-old was marched out of court today with his hands and feet shackled after a trial in April in which he was found guilty of three counts of aggravated indecent assault. The judge in the case also took the step of designating Cosby as a “sexually violent predator” under Pennsylvania law.

This means he will have to register as a sex offender and undergo monthly counselling for the rest of his life. Cosby, who was once known as "America's Dad" was escorted out the courthouse in handcuffs. He will serve at least three years in prison and could spend up to a decade behind bars. His lawyers have argued his frailty and blindness means he does not pose a threat. They had pushed for house arrest rather than prison time and vowed to appeal the conviction. Cosby has always denied any wrongdoing. But judge Steven O'Neill denied a request for bail pending an appeal and ordered he be jailed immediately. Prosecutors called for between five and 10 years in jail.

The disgraced actor declined to make a statement when given a chance by the judge and gave no reaction as he was jailed. Judge O'Neill said Cosby's crime was "very serious".He said: "Equal justice under the law does not allow for different treatment because of who he is or who he was.”Cosby was found guilty of drugging and sexual assault of his one-time friend Andrea Constand at his Philadelphia home in 2004. More than 50 other women have also accused him of sexual abuse going back decades, but because many of the complaints were too old to prosecute, the Constand case was the only allegation that led to criminal charges. Constand said in a written statement that the comedian “took my beautiful healthy young spirit and crushed it”.She said: “He robbed me of my health and vitality, my open nature, and my trust in myself and others."Constant described how the attack had turned her into a woman who was "stuck in a holding pattern for most of her adult life, unable to heal fully or to move forward”.