Former VA Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife Maureen were found guilty of corruption stemming from more than $170,000 in gifts and loans they got from snake oil salesman Jonnie Williams of Star Scientific.
He was found guilty on 11 counts, she on 9. Sentencing is set for January 6, 2015. They plan to appeal their convictions.
I guess the jury didn’t buy their BS claim that they couldn’t have conspired because their marriage was dead and they were barely speaking, a defense stolen from an old episode of L. A. Law.
Recall that McDonnell rejected a plea bargain where he would have pled guilty to a single felony count and she would not have been charged with anything.
“His expression was grim, his voice cracked at just the right times, and he appeared in genuine pain — all while describing his wife.
As Bob McDonnell testified in his public corruption trial Thursday, it was easy to see why he was once regarded as one of the most talented Republican politicians in the country. He didn’t simply throw his wife, Maureen, under a bus to keep himself out of prison. He laid her down gently on the road, with a pillow and blanket.”
“This wasn’t about a disintegrating marriage and an emotional, needy wife. This was a family of people who presented themselves as a shining example of all that is moral and righteous. And once Virginians trusted that they were good people and put McDonnell in office, the entire family allegedly sold off what the people of Virginia had given them — the public trust.
“All the lovesick melodrama that the first lady had a crush on [Jonnie] Williams and all the gifts and cash were about the attention has likely been manufactured by the defense lawyers. Maybe they have some evidence to back up this storyline. But when this scandal began, Bob and Maureen McDonnell showed up in court holding hands, presenting themselves as a solid, Christian couple.
“Now they are changing that narrative, walking in and out of court in separate entourages, riding different elevators, brushing past each other without even making eye contact. The staging in court borders on ridiculous. They are doing nothing more than selling Virginians another tale.”
Petula Dvorak, “Here’s Jonnie: Cue the rapt gaze from former Va. first lady Maureen McDonnell,” WaPo
The defense is total BS, but very clever. Whatever the McDonnells are paying their lawyers, they deserve more!
Former VA Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife Maureen are on trial for corruption in connection with over $165,000 in gifts and loans they got from Jonnie Williams, the head of snake oil company Star Scientific. The guy was selling “health supplements” made from tobacco!
Now Maureen’s lawyer is claiming that Maureen had romantic feelings for Williams and that her marriage had “broken down” to the point that she and the Governor were “barely on speaking terms.”
Sounds as if Governor Ultrasound wasn’t sharing his wand with his wife anymore, and she was looking elsewhere.
Former GOP Virginia governor Bob McDonnell, under federal indictment along with his wife on 14 counts of corruption, rejected a plea deal that would have allowed him to plead guilty to a single count for bank fraud. His wife would not have faced any charges.
The single count would have been for failing to disclose the loans from Star Scientific’s Jonny Williams on a mortgage re-fi application.