Sep 19th - 3:43 pm
A Texas appeals court has overturned the money laundering conviction of former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay.
In a 2-1 vote, the Texas 3rd Court of Appeals ruled that there wasn’t enough evidence to support the conviction. DeLay was convicted in November 2010 and sentenced to three years in prison, but his sentence was on hold pending the appeal.
While in Congress, Delay helped state lawmakers take control of the Texas Legislature by directing campaign money toward specific campaigns. Then-Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle accused Delay of funneling corporate contributions to individual candidates in violation of state ethic laws. The charges eventually cost DeLay his position as majority leader.
DeLay told reporters he had just finished praying with colleagues on Capitol Hill when his lawyer called with the news.
“I just thank the Lord for carrying me through all of this, and it really drove my detractors crazy, because I had the joy of Jesus in me and they didn’t understand that,” DeLay said.
The legal process will likely continue, however. Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg said today she plans to file an appeal with the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.
“We strongly agree that Tom Delay is guilty,” Lehmberg said. “There was a lot of work done by jurors. They sat in the box for three weeks and heard the evidence. This is far from over.”