William Jefferson sentenced

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Ex-Rep. Jefferson Sentenced to 13 Years

Pol busted with $90K in freezer betrays little emotion

(Newser) - A federal judge sentenced former Congressman William Jefferson to 13 years in prison today, less than the 27-plus years prosecutors called for but more than the 10-year term the Louisiana Democrat's lawyer wanted. Jefferson, who was convicted in August of 11 of the 16 counts relating to the public corruption... More »

Ex-Congressman Caught With $90K in Freezer Is Guilty

(Newser) - A federal jury convicted a former Louisiana congressman today of taking bribes on 11 of 16 counts in a case in which agents found $90,000 in his freezer. Former Rep. William Jefferson, a Democrat who had represented parts of New Orleans, was accused of accepting more than $400,000... More »

My Client's Corrupt, But Who Isn't?

All pols have bribes in the freezer, Jefferson's lawyer contends

(Newser) - Former Rep. William Jefferson’s lawyer tried a novel defense tactic in his closing arguments yesterday: putting all of the political class on trial. Sure, his client had stashed bribe money in his freezer—but hasn’t everyone, metaphorically speaking? “We all occupy the gray area,” said attorney... More »

With Friends Like These...

My client was drunk, stupid, sleazy—oh, and black, argues Jefferson's lawyer

(Newser) - What do you say when you’re defending William Jefferson, on trial for allegedly taking $100,000 in bribe money and hiding it in his freezer? Pretty much whatever the heck you can think of, writes Dana Milbank of the Washington Post. The lawyer for the then-Congressman opened his defense... More »

Corruption Trial of Ex-Louisiana Rep Kicks Off

Feds say Jefferson took bribes, had $90K stashed in his freezer

(Newser) - Jury selection began today in the trial of former Louisiana Rep. William Jefferson, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports. The Democrat is charged with taking bribes and using his office to set up business deals in Africa. “It is good to have my family with me,” he said as... More »

Supreme Court Shoots Down Jefferson's Appeal

But will review Conrad Black's conviction

(Newser) - The Supreme Court today refused to hear William Jefferson’s appeal, meaning the former New Orleans congressman’s corruption case is headed for trial, the Times-Picayune reports. The court will, however, consider overturning the fraud conviction against former media mogul Conrad Black and two of his compatriots. More »

Indicted La. Rep Jefferson Loses to GOP Newbie

Victor becomes first Vietnamese-American in Congress

(Newser) - An election delay caused by Hurricane Gustav likely helped tip the vote away from scandal-plagued Louisiana Rep. William Jefferson, whose nine-term Congressional career came to an unexpected end yesterday, the Times-Picayune reports. Republican newbie Anh "Joseph" Cao unseated the 2nd district’s incumbent African-American Democrat in an election marked... More »

Worst Members of Congress

Esquire lists the public servants most wasting your money today

(Newser) - The competition for the worst member of Congress title was more like a marathon, Esquire reports; a wide field of people worked over long periods of time to stake their places in this list. Below, the worst of the worst:
  • Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn: Since being defeated in 2006 (and
... More »

Supreme Court Stands Pat on FBI Raid of Rep's Office

Separation of powers violated, appeals ruled

(Newser) - The Supreme Court declined today to hear an appeal of a ruling that the FBI violated separation-of-powers law in a 2006 raid on the office of Rep. William Jefferson, the New York Times reports. Though the raid itself was not unconstitutional, an appeals court found, the FBI went too far... More »

Jefferson Wins Round, Return of Documents

Appeals court says FBI violated indicted congressman’s rights

(Newser) - Rep. William Jefferson scored a legal victory today, winning the return of privileged materials from a FBI raid on his office. An appeals court said the raid itself was not unconstitutional, but the search of legislative materials was illegal. It’s unclear whether the ruling will affect the 16-count indictment... More »

Jefferson Pleads Not Guilty

Congressman answers federal corruption charges with pledge to 'fight my heart out'

(Newser) - In his first public appearance since being indicted Monday, Rep. William Jefferson pleaded not guilty in federal court in this morning. The Louisiana Democrat, facing a laundry list of charges including bribery, racketeering, and obstruction of justice, then held a press conference in which he reeled off his family's achievements... More »

House Moves to Expel Accused Congressman

Louisiana Democrat charged with bribery, extortion

(Newser) - Pressure mounted on William Jefferson to resign from the House yesterday as leaders of both parties piled on in the wake of his indictment on corruption, racketeering and bribery charges. Republicans moved to initiate proceedings to have the Louisiana Democrat, expelled—which, Dems noted, they did not do when GOP... More »

Jefferson Hit With Corruption Charges

La. Congressman faces 16-count federal indictment, 235 years

(Newser) - Federal officials indicted Rep. William Jefferson today, charging him with bribery, racketeering, money-laundering, and other misdeeds that could carry a sentence of up to 235 years. The Louisiana Democrat, the target of a lengthy investigation into business deals in Africa, has maintained his innocence, even after investigators found $90,000... More »

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