For committing a crime considered very severe in the U.S. and in some countries (hence the 5-year minimum sentence), but not as severe (but may still lead to imprisonment) in many other countries? He does not have any record of academic dishonesty or anything like that; in fact, he had a solid record of publications and was still building on it before he got arrested. Can he still publish papers that are taken seriously, and obtain academic positions, in the U.S. or in some other countries, once out of jail?
UPDATE: I only know what he pleaded guilty to according to news. It is not something noble like an "honest crime". I have confused conviction with indictment, so now I think the crime is most likely real and hardly disputable. I want to add that he is a first-time offender, so I don't know if his prison sentence can be converted to probation, and if that matters to whom may hire him in the future.
I cannot think of one crime which results in a five year sentence where I would hire that person.
Maybe the crime of failing to notify the town of L'Aquila of a 2009 earthquake that killed at least 309 people? Fortunately for those scientists, the initial court ruling was overturned about 2 years later.