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Republican, Alaska (1968-2009)
Update: April 1, 2009: The Justice Department plans to drop all charges against Stevens. The new Attorney General, Eric Holder, said the conviction could not be supported because of problems with the government's prosecution. The federal district court judge Emmet Sullivan earlier had criticized the prosecutors for misconduct, and called their behavior "outrageous" when they failed to turn over documents he had ordered.
Check out the GOP Senators who are returning tainted campaign funds given to them by "Uncle Ted" Stevens
The Honorable Ted Stevens (Republican-Alaska) has been told by attorneys that he'd better preserve records in connection with an ongoing federal investigation into political corruption in Alaska. Stevens' son, Alaska Senate President Ben Stevens is under investigation, according to the Washington Post. Stevens hasn't talked to the Department of Justice, but has complied with the request to preserve documents. Federal investigators thus fare have found that an oil field services company, VECO Corp. gave state legislators more than $400,000 in bribes in return for their votes. Four current and former state lawmakers, all Republicans, have been indicted. There probably will be more.
Memorable quote: Stevens is heard on a wiretap, talking to VECO chairman Bill Allen: "They are not going to shoot us, it's not Iraq. We might have to pay a fine or serve a little time in jail." For other dumb things said by BadBoys, click here.
Update, July 30, 2007: FBI and IRS agents raided the home of Stevens. He knew it was coming, and released this press release: "I urge Alaskans not to form conclusions based upon incomplete and sometimes incorrect reports in the media." He's hired Brendan Sullivan, top-notch criminal defense attorney.
Update, Sept. 21, 2007: Bill Allen, former chief of the oil firm VECO Corp., who himself is under investigation, cooperated with the FBI and secretly tape recorded conversations with Stevens. No word yet on how long this went on or what was on the recordings.
Update, July 29, 2008: Stevens is indicted on seven counts of making false statements about more than $250,000 that corporate executives doled out to overhaul his Anchorage area house. This is what he allegedly got: a new first floor on his Alaska home; new garage; new wrap around deck; new plumbing; new electrical wiring; automobile exchanges; furniture; new Viking gas grill; new multi-drawer tool cabinet with tools.
Stevens: "I have never knowingly submitted a false disclosure form required by law as a U.S. Senator. The impact of these charges on my family disturbs me greatly."
Update, Aug. 20, 2008: Federal judge denies Stevens a request to transfer his trial from Washington to Alaska. Stevens' lawyer, the famed Brendan Sullivan, said "It's all about Alaska. It all happened in Alaska." But wait a second, said the DOJ lawyers: many of Stevens' alleged crimes happened in DC as well as Alaska, and besides, having Uncle Ted campaigning in Alaska could taint the witnesses if moved to Alaska. The federal judge, Emmet G. Sullivan, said it ain't movin'. That would cause "delay and additional expense," said the judge.
Update: Sept. 25, 2008: Opening arguments began today in Washington. Question is, will the famously short-tempered Stevens testify. Now that would be interesting.
Update, October 3, 2008: Federal judge Emmit G. Sullivan is considering a mistrial or even dismissal of charges because Justice Department prosecutors withheld information that they were supposed to turn over to defense lawyers. Sullivan was pissed: "It's very troubling. If it wasn't deliberate, it was gross negligence." With a little bit of courtroom theatrics, Stevens' chief defense lawyer, Brendan Sullivan, threw papers down on the lectern and said he hadn't seen such blatant government ineptitude in his nearly 40 years of practice. The chief prosecutor is Brenda Morris.
Update, October 27, 2008: A jury found Stevens guilty on all seven counts brought against him. Each charge carries a maximum five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. In January 2009, the judge will sentence Stevens.
Update, Nov. 20, 2008: Fellow senators give three-hour tearful good bye to Uncle Ted. Stevens held his head up high, defiant to the end. He leaves the Senate, defeated by Democrat Mark Begich, following a close vote in Alaska.
Recent sources: Del Quentin Wilber, "Judge Denies Sen. Stevens Request to Transfer Corruption Trial," Washington Post, Aug. 20, 2008. Matt Apuzzo and Tom Hays, "Corruption Trial Begins but will Stevens Testify?" Washington Post, Sept. 24, 2008. Neil W. Lewis, "Judge in Stevens Case Weighs Mistrial," New York Times, October 3, 2008. Mark Silva and Josh Meyer, "All Charges Against Former Sen. Ted Stevens to be Dropped," Los Angeles Times, April 1, 2009.