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BREAKING NEWS ~ Tom DeLay indicted in campaign finance investigation

[JURIST] AP is reporting that a Texas grand jury has issued an indictment for US House Majority Leader Tom DeLay [official website]. Earlier this month, an indictment was issued [JURIST report] against a political action committee formed by DeLay and a Texas business group on charges relating to campaign contributions for DeLay's 2002 congressional campaign. Subsequently, two campaign group officials were charged [JURIST report] with violating Texas election law and criminal conspiracy to violate the election law.

12:49 PM ET - According to his lawyer, DeLay has been charged with criminal conspiracy along with John Colyandro, the former executive director of Texans for a Republican Majority [Wikipedia backgrounder], and Jim Ellis, the head of DeLay's national political committee. Under Texas state law the charge is a felony punishable by up to two years in prison. According to House Republican party rules, DeLay will be forced to temporarily step down from his leadership post. AP has more.

1:36 PM ET - The indictment [PDF text] is now available, via FindLaw.

2:53 PM ET - In a statement Wednesday, DeLay said that he has "done nothing wrong" and will be cleared of all allegations. AP has more.

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