Siegelman, Scrushy ‘manipulating events,’ prosecutor says
MONTGOMERY (AP)— Former Gov. Don Siegelman and ex-HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy are “reaching out from their jail cells” in an attempt to sway events linked to their case in a way that could be obstruction of justice, a federal prosecutor told a judge Wednesday.
Speaking during a hearing for former Siegelman aide Nick Bailey, Assistant U.S. Attorney Steve Feaga said Siegelman and Scrushy had been doing things from behind bars to “manipulate events” — acts that could be considered a crime.
Feaga did not provide details to U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller, and he would not elaborate in an interview outside the courtroom. “It should be obvious to anyone who has been paying attention” to what is going on, Feaga said, “and it will be more obvious in the coming months.”
Feaga declined comment on whether Scrushy and Siegelman could face additional charges.
Scrushy’s attorney, Art Leach, said he was baffled by Feaga’s comments and denied that Scrushy had done anything wrong in prison. “What could he possibly be doing? He’s sitting in jail all this time 600 miles from home. He only gets 300 minutes a month on the phone and he spends all that with his wife,” Leach said.
Attorneys for Siegelman did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment.
Feaga’s comments came during a hearing on the sentence of Bailey, whose testimony for the prosecution helped convict Siegelman and Scrushy of bribery charges. Both began serving prison terms June 28.
During the hearing, Feaga also said prosecutors had “reached out” to Siegelman within the last six weeks seeking information that could lead to charges or convictions against other people in other cases. Siegelman refused to cooperate, he said.
Siegelman recently complained about his conviction and sentence in a handwritten letter sent in response to questions from The Associated Press, and supporters repeatedly have posted information on Web sites claiming he was wrongly convicted as result of a Republican conspiracy involving White House aide Karl Rove.
Scrushy hasn’t been heard from publicly since he went to prison, but his wife Leslie has taken over his Christian-themed TV shows that air in Birmingham and Montgomery and frequently uses them to claim the one-time CEO was wrongly convicted.
Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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