Mayor Ray Nagin talks on a mobile phone as he waits for rain to subside at an event commemorating the upcoming anniversary of Hurricane Katrina at the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana, August 26, 2006.
Ray Nagin, then mayor of New Orleans, talks on a mobile phone in New Orleans on Aug. 26, 2006. Nagin was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison on Wednesday for crimes including bribery and money laundering. REUTERS/Lee Celano

Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, previously found guilty of corruption for illegal transactions that occurred while he was in office during Hurricane Katrina, was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison on Wednesday.

Nagin, who was in office from 2002 to 2010, was found guilty in February 2013 on 20 of 21 charges, including bribery, wire fraud, conspiracy, money laundering and tax evasion, reports Reuters. The jury acquitted him on only one bribery count.

During the trial, Nagin denied taking bribes and insisted he was trying to help his sons by investing in their business, “like any father,” Reuters quoted the former mayor.

Robert Jenkins, Nagin’s defense attorney, said he was “surprised” at the verdict and the team planned to move forward with the appeal process, reports the Times-Picayune.

Many of the charges were brought against Nagin after Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans in 2005, leaving tens of thousands homeless and 1,500 dead. During this time, Nagin criticized the Bush administration for responding too slowly to the disaster.