473 Rick Renzi conviction is an object lesson


Tom Garrett 3 years, 2 months ago

Did you read the article on Rick Renzi's conviction a few weeks back? Or the editorial? They bring up an important points, don't they?

Once the FBI gets on the track of corruption in public office, though it may take some time as it did with Renzi the people involved would be wise to pack their bags and move to a country with no extradition treaty with the United States. They are going to get nailed — and jailed.

Read this FBI comment on corruption:

"Currently, the FBI—with our partners—is working more than 2,000 corruption investigations involving public officials around the country. These investigative efforts certainly pay off—during fiscal year 2010, our cases led to more than 1,330 informations/indictments and over 900 convictions (primarily at the federal level but also some at the local level).

"Our ability to use sophisticated investigative tools and methods—like undercover operations—is one of the reasons why the FBI is in a unique position to investigate allegations of corruption. These tools and methods often give investigators a front-row seat to witness the actual exchange of bribe money or a handshake that seals an illegal deal.

"Bribery is the most common form of corruption the Bureau investigates. But there are plenty more crimes—including extortion, embezzlement, racketeering, kickbacks, money laundering, and all sorts of fraud. A significant portion of our cases involve border corruption.

"At the end of the day, the majority of public officials are honest, hard-working individuals determined to improve the lives of their fellow citizens. But a small number of elected, appointed, or contracted officials are only focused on their own good. The actions of corrupt officials—often with the help of private sector accomplices—undermine democratic institutions and threaten national security, which is why the FBI ranks public corruption as our top criminal priority."

"top criminal priority." I hope that sends a shiver down the back of anyone who thinks he can corrupt a public office of any kind and get away with it.

To show you what I mean, here are some of the headlines from just one week of FBI activity:

• Chicago: Federal jury convicts former Cook County official of steering county contracts.

• Former State Senator Enters a Plea of Guilty to Wire Fraud

• ‘Dirty DUI’ Cop Convicted of Extortion and Honest Services Fraud

• Two Forsyth City Coucilmen Plead Guilty to Accepting Bribes

• Two Patient Recruiters of Miami Home Health Company Plead Guilty in $48 Million Health Care Fraud Scheme

• San Antonio: Progreso Mayor and Other Public Officials Charged in Conjunction with Bribery Scheme

• Former Judge Abel Limas in Prison for Taking Bribes

If I had the room I could put up lots more.


Tom Garrett 3 years, 1 month ago

The wheels of justice grind slowly, but they grind exceeding fine.


Tom Garrett 3 years, 1 month ago

I'm laughing at my last post, thinking about that term "grinding." I have a picture in my mind of some scuzzball being ground between two very large stone wheels a la grist mill.


But i swear! Some people deserve something like that.

As long as I'm not the one who has to feed them into the machine.

Pat, you need a part-time job? :-)


Tom Garrett 3 years, 1 month ago

Forgot about that. You think you could supervise a few thousand people?


Tom Garrett 3 years, 1 month ago

You know? I sometimes think that I could meter out justice better than the system is doing. I'll bet we all feel that way at times. I wonder if it's true, or we just think it is?


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