Judge Orders Martha Stewart to Surrender by Oct. 8

A federal judge Tuesday ordered Martha Stewart (search) to surrender for prison by Oct. 8, granting a request by the celebrity homemaker to begin serving her sentence.

The judge also recommended that U.S. prison officials assign Stewart to a prison camp in Danbury, Conn., or Coleman, Fla. — the two she requested last week.

U.S. District Judge Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum sentenced Stewart to five months in prison in July, but allowed Stewart to remain out of prison while she appealed her conviction.

The 63-year-old millionaire businesswoman announced last Wednesday that she had decided to surrender for prison as soon as possible, citing the need "to put this nightmare behind me."

While her legal problems hit her company hard, its shares have shot up nearly 30 percent since she said she wanted to begin her sentence.

Even before the judge's order, shares of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. (MSO) traded over 9 percent higher Tuesday, in part due to speculation she could retool her TV show with "Survivor" creator Mark Burnett (search) after her release.

A spokeswoman for Martha Stewart said the trendsetter was "pleased" the judge set an early date for her surrender, and that she hoped to serve her sentence near her home in Connecticut.

Stewart was sentenced in July after she was convicted of lying about why she sold ImClone Systems Inc. (IMCL) stock in 2001.

The U.S. Bureau of Prisons (search) must now decide where Stewart will serve her time. The minimum-security facility in Connecticut, close to Stewart's home in Westport, is her first choice.

Cedarbaum said Stewart must surrender for prison by 2 p.m. on Oct. 8. A five-month term would place Stewart's release in early March — in time, as Stewart said last week, for spring planting season.

After the five-month term, Stewart still must serve five months of house arrest.

The decision by Cedarbaum came one day before Larry Stewart (search), an ink expert who testified for the government at the trial, is set to go on trial himself on charges that he lied repeatedly during his testimony.

Stewart and her former stockbroker, Peter Bacanovic (search), were convicted in March. He received the identical sentence of five months in prison and five months of house arrest.

Stewart resigned as CEO of her company when she was indicted and gave up her seat on the board after she was convicted. She remains its leading creative force and holds the title of founding editorial director.

Shares in Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia traded up $1.22 or 9.26 percent at $14.39 on the New York Stock Exchange (search) on Tuesday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.