FBI, IRS Search Home of Sen. Ted Stevens

Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) 

UPDATE: Michelle Malkin has joined those of us posting on topic. 

said it a few weeks ago: Republicans can’t tell the Dems to clean their House, if they won’t come clean about the GOP’s own dirtbags. Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens is one of the biggest and dirtiest. Now, the feds have raided one of his homes…

After all this time, Ted Stevens’ infamous Bridge to Nowhere might finally lead somewhere–perhaps a jail cell next to fellow GOP corruptocrat Duke Cunningham.

UPDATE: Here is the story from the Anchorage Daily News by Richard Mauer and Erika Bolstad . 

Federal law enforcement agents have been searching the Girdwood home of Alaska U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens for most of the afternoon.

“All I can say is that agents from the FBI and IRS are currently conducting a search at that residence,” said Dave Heller, the assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s Anchorage office. The search began earlier this afternoon, he said. It’s the only such search warrant currently being served, he said.

Throughout the afternoon, a number of federal agents could be seen outside the house, along with a half-dozen government SUVs and other vehicles. Other agents were inside, with curtains drawn.

It couldn’t immediately be determined what, if anything, was being taken from the house. Some of the agents could be seen photographing the house’s exterior and surrounding property, including electrical outlets.

Agents at the house wouldn’t answer questions. Neighbors said the agents arrived around 11 a.m., and that a commercial locksmith company was called to open the door.

Heller, the FBI spokesman in Anchorage, directed other questions to the U.S. Justice Department’s Public Integrity Section in Washington. A spokesman there had no comment, nor would a spokesman for the IRS comment.

Stevens’ Washington, D.C., lawyer, Brendan Sullivan, said he had a “longstanding practice not to comment on such matters” and would not answer any questions about the raid. Sullivan, one of the best-known criminal defense lawyers in Washington, represented former Lt. Col. Oliver North, the central figure in the Iran-Contra scandal in the late 1980s.

Stevens said in a written statement that his lawyers were told this morning that federal agents “wished to search my home in Girdwood in connection with an ongoing investigation.”

Federal investigators and grand juries looking into public corruption in Alaska have been asking questions about a 2000 remodeling project that more than doubled the size of the Girdwood house — particularly the involvement of the oil field services firm Veco. Three contractors who worked on the project told the Daily News that their records had been subpoenaed by a federal grand jury, and others connected with the work and with Stevens had been interviewed.

One of the contractors who worked on the job said he was hired by Veco CEO Bill Allen for the job, and while his bills were paid by Stevens and his wife, Catherine, invoices were reviewed first by Veco.

Allen and a Veco vice president pleaded guilty in May to bribery, extortion and other charges connected with paying off state legislators.

Two weeks ago, Stevens told reporters that money for the remodeling came out of his own pocket.

“As a practical matter, I will tell you. We paid every bill that was given to us,” Stevens told reporters. “Every bill that was sent to us has been paid, personally, with our own money, and that’s all there is to it. It’s our own money.”

Beyond that, Stevens has issued a written statement repeatedly in recent months saying he would have no comment on the ongoing corruption probe.

A total of four former state lawmakers have been charged with bribery, along with a prison-industry lobbyist. One, former Anchorage Rep. Tom Anderson was convicted earlier this summer of bribery and other crimes for taking money from the lobbyist for a private prison company.

Last August, federal agents served more than 20 search warrants across the state, including at the offices of six state legislators, including Ted Stevens’ son, Ben Stevens, who at the time was president of the state Senate.

Ted Stevens, 83, is the longest-serving Republican senator.

Fox News weighs in on issues of the investigation.

According to reports, in the last six years, Stevens has received more than $119,000, including $20,000 from VECO’s former CEO Bill Allen. Stevens and Allen also are longtime friends and partners in a race horse investment.

Allen is also involved in a house-remodeling project Stevens undertook in 2000 and for which previously acknowledged that authorities warned him to preserve records. He told the Anchorage two weeks ago that he paid for all the renovations himself.

The construction project apparently called for Stevens to expand his Girdwood home to twice its original size. While it was estimated to be an $85,000 project, for which Stevens told city building officials he would be his own contractor, the construction project went terribly awry when the framing was botched and the carpentry alone ended up costing more than $100,000.

Carpenter Augie Paone has said he was hired by an employee of VECO to go in and fix the original job so that Stevens’ home could be raised off its foundation and a new first floor with two bedrooms, a game room, sauna and wraparound porch could be constructed.

Paone said he submitted his bills to Allen but didn’t find anything unusual about the project. Stevens paid for it with a series of checks, according to two people close to the investigation who spoke on condition of anonymity because grand jury matters are secret by law.

Stevens would not discuss the details of the investigation, including why the checks were drawn on an apparently new account and where the money came from.

Along with the carpentry bill, contractor Tony Hannah said Stevens paid $3,720 to have the house jacked up. The FBI has those records, and agents recently examined Stevens’ building permits, which do not mention VECO or any of the contractors who worked on the job. They also have begun questioning Stevens’ former Capitol Hill aides.

Stevens is not the only Alaska lawmaker being scrutinized. A government watchdog group filed a complaint against Sen. Lisa Murkowski over a land purchase that was said to be a steal. Rep. Don Young is also entangled with VECO, having received $157,000 from VECO employees and its political-action committee over the last 10 years.

Federal agents served more than 20 search warrants across the state in August, including at the offices of six state legislators, the Anchorage Daily News reported. At the time, Stevens’ son Ben Stevens was the president of the state Senate. Files were taken from his office, but he has not been charged with any wrongdoing.

read more…

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H/T to Drudge

Breitbart.com reports that the FBI and IRS searched the home of Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) as part of an on-going probe into public corruption.

Agents from the FBI and Internal Revenue Service on Monday searched the home of U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens, an official said.

Investigators arrived at the Republican senator’s home in Girdwood shortly before 2:30 p.m. Alaska time, said Dave Heller, FBI assistant special agent.

Heller said he could not comment on the nature of the investigation.

The Justice Department has been looking into the seven-term senator’s relationship with a wealthy contractor as part of a public corruption investigation.

It’s too early to speak yet on guilt or innocence.  But, if he is guilty of the public corruption charges for which he is being investigated, at least there will be one less crook in Washington and it will just go to show that they walk on both sides of the aisle.

Don Surber, Captain’s Quarters, UrbanGrounds, Republican GOP News Source, Strangelove, The Stout Republican

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One Response to “FBI, IRS Search Home of Sen. Ted Stevens”

  1. More on the Sen. Ted Stevens probe coming to the light « Volunteer Opinion Journal Says:

    […] posting on the investigation here and […]

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