Judge Declines to Toss Out Abramoff-Related Case
By Joe Palazzolo | June 25, 2022 6:47 pm

U.S. District Judge Ellen Huvelle upheld all ten of the counts facing ex-lobbyist Kevin Ring, reports The BLT.  Ring is accused of lavishing lawmakers with free gifts, trips and meals, in return for helping his clients.

The government does not seek to criminalize ‘traditional’ lobbying activities such as constitutionally protected petitioning or even the provision of meals and drinks in order to cultivate goodwill,” Huvelle wrote in response to criticisms by Ring’s lawyers. “Nor does the government seek to criminalize Ring’s supposed failure to prevent public officials from violating ethics rules by accepting his gifts. What the indictment does charge is that Ring devised and assisted as scheme … to deprive the public of the honest services of certain identified public officials.

The case, as we’ve reported here, has strange ties to the Ted Stevens prosecution. In a court filing late last week, the Justice Department disclosed that Public Integrity chief William Welch II voluntarily pulled himself off the Ring case. Welch is under criminal investigation by Henry Schuelke III of Janis, Schuelke & Wechsler, for possible criminal contempt in the Stevens case. Schuelke was hired by Abramoff’s firm to conduct an internal investigation after the influence-peddling scandal broke in 2004, and he’s a government witness in the Ring case. Ring’s lawyers, Miller & Chevalier partners Richard Hibey, Andrew Wise and Timothy O’Toole, not only raised concerns about a conflict of interest but accused Welch of redacting information from documents he had turned over to them.


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