By Jerry Seper-The Washington Times
Once one of the most powerful and feared Republicans in Congress, former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay was convicted Wednesday in a Texas court on two charges related to the illegal funneling of $190,000 in corporate donations to Texas legislative races.
DeLay, who earned the nickname “the Hammer” for his style as Republican whip, faces sentences of two years to 20 years for conspiracy to commit money laundering and five years to 99 years, or life in prison, for money laundering.
Judge Pat Priest, who has wide discretion under Texas law, will hand down sentences in the case at a hearing tentatively set for Dec. 20.
The jurors deliberated for 19 hours before returning their guilty verdicts.
More than 30 prosecution witnesses were called in the three-week trial, along with the introduction of hundreds of e-mails and other documents, in an attempt to prove that DeLay conspired with two associates in 2002 to circumvent a state law against corporate contributions to political campaigns.
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