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Archive for Friday, June 30, 2006

Former governor found guilty in corruption trial

June 30, 2006

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— Former Gov. Don Siegelman and former HealthSouth chief executive officer Richard Scrushy were convicted Thursday in federal court in a bribery scheme that derailed Siegelman's campaign to retake his former office.

Siegelman, 60, was accused of trading government favors for campaign donations when he was governor from 1999 to 2003 and lieutenant governor from 1995 to 1999.

Scrushy, 53, who once ran the Birmingham-based chain of rehabilitation clinics, was accused of arranging $500,000 in donations to Siegelman's campaign for a state lottery in exchange for a seat on a state hospital regulatory board.

The case was tried as Siegelman sought the Democratic nomination for governor, and the trial put him in court during the final weeks of the campaign. He lost to Lt. Gov. Lucy Baxley in the June 6 Democratic primary and blamed the charges for his defeat.

Federal Judge Mark Fuller allowed Siegelman and Scrushy to remain free on an undisclosed amount of bond. He did not set a sentencing date.

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