October 29, 2014 |
THOMASINE TYNES, the former Philadelphia Traffic Court president judge named as one of five local officials who allegedly took bribes in an aborted sting operation, yesterday became the first person charged criminally in the sordid affair. District Attorney Seth Williams, in announcing the arrest of Tynes, 71, proclaimed that the grand-jury investigation into political corruption is ongoing and that the former judge may not be the only one to face justice. He urged those with information about political corruption to come forward.
July 22, 2014
While men and women of note may be displayed in gilt frames and careful poses, the usual suspects have to settle for harsh lighting and height markers. The conventions of a portrait gallery, in other words, differ from those of a police lineup. The trouble with any sizable collection of Pennsylvania politicians' likenesses is that it is likely to be both. Take the pantheon of past legislative leaders whose images hang in the state Capitol: No fewer than four of the men depicted went on to pose for their mug shots.
April 29, 2013 |
Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams has quietly assembled an elite team of veteran prosecutors to investigate public corruption. To staff the effort, Williams has hired prosecutors from the state Attorney General's Office who brought successful cases against senior political figures in both parties, including former House Speaker John M. Perzel. Earlier this month, Williams received court approval to create a new investigative grand jury, which allows prosecutors to subpoena documents and compel testimony.
February 29, 2012 |
A fourth Bucks County official charged in the political corruption case that rocked the Register of Wills Office was sentenced Tuesday to six to 12 months of house arrest. The sentence for the second deputy, Rebecca Kiefer, was less severe than the three- to six-month prison term administrator Candace Quinn received, although the two pleaded guilty to the same offenses of forcing employees to work the polls for Republican candidates, paying them with unauthorized compensatory time, and trying to cover up the practice.
January 24, 2012 |
HARRISBURG - He is nothing more than "a common thief," prosecutors argued. He is an innocent man framed by corrupt underlings, his defense attorney countered. Those were the two versions presented of Rep. Bill DeWeese, the onetime Democratic leader from southwestern Pennsylvania, at the start of his trial Monday morning in a Dauphin County courtroom just blocks from the state Capitol. DeWeese, 61, is charged with theft and other crimes in a political corruption case stemming from the state Attorney General's "Bonusgate" investigation.
January 16, 2012
THE CASE OF state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin comes with layers and tentacles that could create a multilevel political nightmare. The justice, as reported last week by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review , is a recipient of a target letter from an Allegheny County grand jury, usually a prelude to criminal charges. Two of her sisters, state Sen. Jane Orie, R-Allegheny County, and Janine Orie, an aide to Joan, already are charged with using public offices and employees for campaign purposes, including working to elect Joan to the court in 2009.
August 18, 2011 |
HARRISBURG - Two former aides to onetime state House Speaker John Perzel yesterday entered the first Republican guilty pleas in a legislative-corruption case that revolves around the alleged illegal diversion of millions of taxpayer dollars into political campaigns. At a hearing in Dauphin County court, Samuel Stokes, Perzel's brother-in-law, pleaded guilty to one count each of conspiracy and conflict of interest. Former Perzel campaign aide Don McClintock pleaded guilty to a single count of conspiracy.
September 21, 2010 |
Zane David Memeger was sworn into office Monday as U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, in a ceremony attended by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and U.S. Sens. Arlen Specter and Bob Casey. President Obama nominated Memeger in April, and the Senate confirmed him in May. Between stints in private practice, Memeger was an assistant U.S. attorney from 1995 to 2006, and he was part of the team that prosecuted former Philadelphia mob boss Joseph Merlino. Memeger said the office under his direction would focus on terrorism; "quality-of-life" crimes involving guns, drugs, and violent robberies; white-collar financial crimes and fraud; and political corruption.
September 20, 2010 |
Zane David Memeger was sworn into office Monday as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, in a ceremony attended by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and U.S. Senators Arlen Specter and Robert P. Casey, Jr. President Obama nominated Memeger in April and the U.S. Senate confirmed him in May. Between stints in private practice, Memeger was an Assistant U.S. Attorney from 1995 to 2006, and he was part of the team that prosecuted former...
August 11, 2010
Leonard Pitts Jr. is way off base in "Keeping faith, losing religion" (Sunday). He critiques organized religion in general and Christianity in particular in the easiest but most unfair and unbalanced way. If you want to discredit something, cite a long list of its failures without mentioning any of its positive features. For example, Pitts makes the sweeping statement that Christianity "has traded moral authority for political power. " It has become "a wholly owned subsidiary of the Republican Party.