Israel, caught again with its hand in the cookie jar
"They're singing for their supper," Ney lawyer Mark Tuohey said of Abramoff, Volz, Rudy and Scanlon.Maybe so. But, that doesn't mean it's not TRUE.
A former top aide to Rep. Bob Ney, R-Ohio, pleaded guilty Monday in the Jack Abramoff influence peddling scandal, admitting he conspired to corrupt Ney, his staff and other members of Congress with trips, free tickets, jobs, meals and campaign events.
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Volz, 35, worked for Ney from 1995 until early 2002, when he went to work for Abramoff.This isn't some pro se defendant with no means of effective representation. When he agrees to face consequences like these, he does it because he KNOWS he doesn't stand a chance even with the best attorneys.
Are these accusations accurate? U.S. District Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle asked Volz during a court proceeding.
"Yes, your honor," Volz replied.
"Mr. Volz, how do you wish to plead?" asked the judge.
"Guilty, your honor," Volz replied. Volz faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The court papers did not detail the conduct of other congressmen, but it said that Ney, acting with Volz and others, agreed to:And that's not all . . .
- Sponsor legislation to lift a ban against commercial gambling by the Tigua Indian tribe, an Abramoff client in Texas.
- Sign a letter opposing creation of a commission to study Indian gambling.
- Assist Abramoff in obtaining government property for Abramoff's private school in Maryland.
Among the projects on which Volz worked was securing a contract for Foxcom Wireless, an Israeli communications company, to improve cell phone reception in House office buildings.Improving cell phone reception, eh? Caught again with your hands in the communications cookie jar.
In a conference phone call with reporters, Ney's lawyers acknowledged that the congressman met with Abramoff about a wireless contract for the House buildings.Yeah, right.
The lawyers added that Ney, then chairman of the House Administration Committee, also met with Haley Barbour, now the governor of Mississippi, who was lobbying for a competing firm at the time.
Ney has said he would have been within his rights to award the contract on his own, but instead held an open competition and awarded it based on merit to the firm represented by Abramoff, Foxcom Wireless.
Some people just can't get enough.
And the web continues to unravel.
I can't wait to see where this trail ends. But, something tells me we won't be surprised.