Tom DeLay Guilty of Money Laundering

Former House majority leader faces life in prison
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 24, 2010 5:14 PM CST
In this Oct. 26 file photo, former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay waits for his attorneys inside the Travis County courthouse in Austin.   (Jack Plunkett)
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(Newser) – Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay—once one of the most powerful and feared Republicans in Congress—was convicted today on charges he illegally funneled corporate money to Texas candidates in 2002. Jurors deliberated for 19 hours before returning guilty verdicts against DeLay on charges of money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering. He faces up to life in prison on the money laundering charge.

Prosecutors said DeLay, who once held the No. 2 job in the House and whose heavy-handed style earned him the nickname "the Hammer," used his political action committee to illegally channel $190,000 in corporate donations into 2002 Texas legislative races through a money swap. DeLay and his attorneys maintained the former Houston-area congressman did nothing wrong as no corporate funds went to Texas candidates and the money swap was legal.

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