Texas
2:15 pm
Tue November 23, 2010

Jury Deliberations Continue in DeLay Trial

Updated at 4:45pm: The jury has told Judge Pat Priest they are making headway in their deliberations, but they want to go home for the day.  Lawyers on both sides are not objecting.  Deliberations will resume tomorrow.

Updated at 2:10pm: The jury in the Tom DeLay trial is still deliberating after a break for lunch.  When they came back from the break, they submitted a long list of evidence they want to see in the jury room. 

Earlier: Jurors are resuming their deliberations this morning in the money laundering trial of former House majority leader Tom DeLay, without clarity on a key question they submitted after their first day.

Judge Pat Priest took arguments from prosecutors and the defense a short time ago, on how to answer the question posed by the jury during their first day of deliberations yesterday.  The jurors asked for clarification on whether it is still considered money laundering if the money in question was not originally obtained illegally.  They appear to be questioning whether the corporate campaign money, which were raised legally by DeLay's PAC, could be laundered if it was not initially "dirty".

Judge Priest ultimately told the jury he could not answer the question without commenting on the weight of the evidence, which he is barred from doing. It was left up to the jury to figure the matter out for themselves.

DeLay is accused of laundering $190,000 in corporate donations through the Republican National Committee, which then sent the same amount to 7 candidates for the Texas legislature.  State law bars candidates in Texas from receiving corporate donations directly or indirectly.

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