The political money laundering conviction of former U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Tx) was overturned by a state appeals court yesterday, the Texas Tribune reports. “Based on the totality of the evidence, we conclude that the evidence presented does not support a conclusion that DeLay committed the crimes that were charged,” the 2-to-1 opinion said. “The fundamental problem with the State's case was its failure to prove proceeds of criminal activity.”
The former U.S. House Majority leader was accused of ordering contributions from a state political action committee to the GOP's federal accounts, which then contributed to seven candidates in Texas elections. The effect of that, according to prosecutors, was to funnel corporate money into political campaigns that would otherwise have been illegal. A dissenting judge said the money came from illegal corporate contributions. Prosecutors will ask the full Texas Court of Criminal Appeals to review the ruling. “We are concerned and disappointed that two judges substituted their assessment of the facts for that of 12 jurors,” the prosecutors said.