Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Damnit!

If you are accused of commiting a crime, you get a trial with a jury of your peers, and if you are found guilty, you have to pay the piper.

Losing an election should never be an excuse for dismissing criminal charges. When is the last time you've heard of the government asking a judge to drop the charges *after* the jury has convicted the defendant? Unfortunately, that is exactly what the Justice Department is doing in the corruption case of former Senator Ted Stevens.

Christ, this article is infuriating. What is next? Dismissing ex-Rep. William Jefferson's 16 corruption charges because he lost his election?

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The Justice Department asked a federal court Wednesday to "set aside the verdict and dismiss the indictment" in the corruption case against former Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska, court documents show.

Stevens, 85, was convicted in October on seven counts of lying on mandatory financial disclosure forms.

Stevens hid "hundreds of thousands of dollars of freebies" he received from an oil field services company and its CEO, Assistant U.S. Attorney General Matthew Friedrich said.

Many of the alleged free services were given as part of a renovation of Stevens' Alaska home.

Stevens maintained his innocence even after the conviction, and his sentencing has been delayed amid charges by an FBI agent of prosecutorial misconduct.

Stevens lost a re-election bid in November to Democrat Mark Begich, who had been Anchorage's mayor.

Stevens was appointed to the Senate in December 1968.

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