Chaka Fattah's new residence on the edge of the Allegheny National Forest doesn't quite have the charm of the Poconos vacation home he bought in 2012 with help from an $18,000 bribe.

Maybe it's the armed security.

But on Wednesday, the man who represented Philadelphia in Congress for the last two decades moved into a federal prison camp in Lewis Run, McKean County, Pa., to begin serving a 10-year sentence for corruption-related crimes.

Officially, the new abode is known as Federal Correctional Institution-McKean, a medium-security prison with a minimum-security satellite camp, on the New York-Pennsylvania border.

Its 1,200 or so inmates have included the actor Wesley Snipes, who spent two years there for tax evasion, and former Colombo crime family boss Alphonse Persico, who calls the prison home while serving a life sentence for murder and witness tampering.

As Fattah joined their ranks just after 11 a.m., he was assigned a fresh moniker to match his new address: Inmate No. 72340-066.

The title effectively put a period on his career as one of the area's most recognizable political names and the scandal that led to his conviction last year on charges of racketeering, bribery, money laundering, and fraud.

But the ex-congressman may have more ideas than most new arrivals on what to expect at his new abode.

His son, Chaka Jr., has been housed in a low-security federal prison in Michigan since last year, when U.S. District Judge Harvey Bartle III sentenced him to five years for unrelated bank and tax fraud crimes.

Bartle presided over Fattah's own trial in June, which exposed the former legislator as a habitual lawbreaker who repeatedly turned to taxpayer and charity funds to cover his personal and political debts and was not above accepting bribes, such as the $18,000 from a wealthy supporter he used to help fund the purchase of his Poconos retreat.

As the judge ordered Fattah's decade of incarceration - the second-longest prison term ever received by a member of Congress - he condemned the ex-lawmaker at a December hearing for abusing "the trust voters placed in [him] time and time again."

Still, Fattah resisted his big move up until the last minute.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit denied his request this month to remain free while he challenged his conviction. The White House remained silent on his last-minute bid for a presidential pardon.

And yet, in an interview with WHYY-FM on his last day of freedom Tuesday, Fattah remained upbeat. He maintained his usual optimistic assessment of his chances on appeal. He vowed to weather prison with a smile.

"There won't be a day in my life in which I'm not upbeat," he said. "I'm not talking about any unusual or unhealthy sort of enjoyment out of my predicament. That's not my point. My point is that I'm more than capable of dealing with these challenges than most people in our country."

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