A Travis County jury has convicted former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay on conspiracy and money laundering charges. Delay was accused of illegally funneling corporate money to Texas candidates in 2002.
The crimes carry a maximum penalty of 99 years in prison, effectively a life sentence. DeLay's lawyer,Dick DeGuerin, indicated that he would prefer a judge to sentence his client instead of a jury. DeGuerin also made clear DeLay's intention to appeal the conviction.
Jurors at the Travis County Criminal Justice Complex deliberated for about 19 hours before returning guilty verdicts on Wednesday on charges of money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Prosecutors accused the former Congressman of using his Texas For A Republican Majority Political Action Committee (PAC) to funnel $190,000 in corporate donations into Texas legislative races. Those lawmakers were barred from accepting corporate contributions.
DeLay and his attorneys maintained no corporate funds went to Texas candidates and the money swap was legal.
Listen to a Q&A with KUT's Matt Largey, who has been covering the story, by clicking on the player.