Friday, December 9, 2005

Abramoff Co-Defendant to Plead Guilty

Adam Kidan, who was indicted along with lobbyist Jack Abramoff on conspiracy and fraud charges related to a $147 million loan to purchase a casino ship company, is scheduled for a change of plea hearing on Dec. 15 in Miami.  If Kidan cooperates with the government's investigation, which appears very likely, then the pressure on Abramoff goes up yet another notch.  Recently, one of Abramoff's former lobbying partners, Michael Scanlon, entered a guilty plea to a conspiracy charge that sets forth in extensive detail questionable payments and gifts from Abramoff -- identified as Lobbyist A -- to Ohio Congressman Bob Ney -- identified as Representative #1.  The Southern District of Florida case involves rather significant potential losses, which could trigger a substantial prison sentence if Abramoff were convicted.  With each plea agreement, Abramoff's ability to fight the actual and potential charges becomes more difficult as his closest business associates provide the government with information that will be used against him.  A story (here) discusses the Kidan's potential plea. (ph)

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