Bulletproof Diction BREAKING NEWS: Ted Stevens Indicted by DoJ
Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK), the longest-serving Republican in the Senate, is being indicted by the Justice Department on criminal charges. The official announcement will be made at 1:20 PM ET.
Update from Steve Centanni at Fox News (1:02 PM ET):
The seven counts are related to false statements allegedly made by Sen. Stevens in connection to Bill Allen of the VECO corporation. The situation is connected to a house raided by the FBI almost a year ago.
Update (1:19 PM ET):
I wouldn’t mind if Moneybags the Old Fart would kindly exit from Congress. Dick Morris chronicled in his book Outrage (pgs. 153-54) that Sen. Stevens is the most egregious pork-barrel spender in Congress. “Stevens has gotten $325 million in earmarks in the 2006 appropriations cycle…” This includes, among other things, “$25,000,000 for rural and native villages, $1,300,000 for berry research, $1,099,000 for alternative salmon products, and $500,000 for fruit and berry crop trials.” The book also mentions that “his wife, Catherine Stevens, is a lobbyist for Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw.” A story in the LA Times “reported that he tried to save a $450 million defense contract for a local businessman who had previously been his partner in a lucrative real estate deal.” And if all the wasn’t enough, according to the book, Sen. Stevens “greet[s] [his] unwanted citizen visitors with hostile glares.”
Update from Fox News (1:40 PM ET):
The indictment alleges that Stevens, the longest-serving Republican in the Senate, made false representations in his Senate financial disclosure forms and to federal investigators in an effort to cover his receiving significant construction services on his Girdwood, Alaska, home.
Those services came from Bill Allen and the company he founded, VECO Corp, an influential Alaska oil services firm that has been the focus of federal investigators in an ongoing public corruption probe spanning the last two years.
In 2000, Allen oversaw construction on Stevens’ house in the ski community of Girdwood. Stevens has claimed he paid for all the construction.
In the indictment, officials said VECO built Stevens, among other things, a new first floor to the house, a new garage, a new first- and second-floor wraparound deck, and new plumbing and wiring. VECO also provided him with expensive new vehicles in exchange for his used cars, furniture, household goods, a new tool chest stocked with tools, a brand new gas grill, and other items.
Investigators estimate the value of the material provided to Stevens to be $250,000.
Officials also allege he falsified his disclosure statements between 1999 and 2006, and possibly longer, to cover up his gains.
Prosecutors also said Stevens “took multiple steps to continue” receiving things from VECO and Allen. At the time of the construction, the indictment says, Allen and other VECO employees were soliciting Stevens for “multiple official actions …. knowing that Stevens could and did use his official position and his office on behalf of VECO during that same time period.”
VECO’s requests included funding and other aid for the oil services company’s projects and partnerships in Pakistan and Russia. It also included federal grants from several agencies — as well as help in building a national gas pipeline in Alaska’s North Slope Region, according to the indictment filed in U.S. District Court in Washington.
Stick a fork in him. He’s done.
Update (1:57 PM ET):
One of the gifts in question is a “Viking gas range.” This is the top-of-the-line available gas range and can “range” from $3000 up to $10,000. Also, according to Fox, he exchanged “an old Ford for a Land Rover.” It appears that objects of this magnitude could certainly have a shady origin.
Update: (2:37 AM ET):
The full text of the indictment can be found here:
Points of Interest:
- ‘STEVENS often refers to the Girdwood Residence as “the chalet.”‘
- ‘In or about the spring of 1999, STEVENS and ALLEN discussed the fact that STEVENS wished to obtain a new car for his dependent child. Thereafter, in or about June, 1999, ALLEN transferred a new 1999 Land Rover Discovery, which ALLEN had purchased new for approximately $44,000, to STEVENS in exchange for STEVENS’ 1964 1/2 Ford Mustang and $5,000. At the time ALLEN transferred the 1999 Land Rover Discovery to STEVENS, the 1964 1/2 Ford Mustang was worth less than $20,000.
- He signs his e-mails as “best teds”…
- He received four reported gifts, $1,428 total, from three foreign dignitaries in one year.