A Collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh

Third grand jury refused to indict DeLay, prosecutor reveals

[JURIST] A third grand jury previously unrevealed by prosecutors refused to indict former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay [official website; JURIST news archive] last week, according to a written statement released late Tuesday by Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle [official website]. DeLay has been indicted by two grand juries [JURIST report] in the past week, but Earle revealed that prosecutors took their case to a third grand jury between the two indictments, and that grand jury refused to issue an indictment. Following DeLay's original indictment [PDF text] for conspiracy to violate election laws, DeLay's defense attorneys challenged [motion, PDF] whether the conspiracy charge applied to election law. Prosecutors then sought to bring new money-laundering charges against the former House leader "out of an abundance of caution," according to Earle, only to have the charges rejected on Friday by a grand jury impaneled by District Judge Julie Kocurek. Prosecutors presented the charges again on Monday to a third grand jury, which issued the second indictment. A notice typically released following a grand jury's refusal to indict was not released Friday. Defense attorneys for DeLay protested the news, calling prosecutors' actions "outrageous." Earle said presenting the case to a third grand jury was justified based on new evidence that was obtained over the weekend, but defense attorney Bill White called the claim "beyond the pale." The Austin American-Statesman has more [registration required].

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.