Greenberg Traurig Indicted in Guam
Posted Mar 12, 2008 3:41 PM CDT
By Martha Neil
Disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff and the firm for which he formerly worked have been indicted in Guam for allegedly making improper billings to the U.S. territory's superior court.
At issue in the case against Greenberg Traurig and other defendants is "a multitude of nonjudicial related activities the superior court paid for under the guise of a lobbyist contract," reports KUAM News. Prosecutors say the firm "charged the local judiciary for limousine services, travel for former senator Mark Charfauros, rounds of golf at various premier golf resorts around the world," the NBC affiliate writes on its website.
However, in a statement (PDF) e-mailed to ABAJournal.com, the firm says it, too, "was a victim of Abramoff's actions," and will address the indictment—which came as a complete surprise to the firm—in a spirit of cooperation.
The case, which also includes charges against a former court administrator, involves $324,000 paid by the court between 2001 and 2003 in dozens of $9,000 increments that were small enough to fly under the judicial branch administrative radar. They were allegedly made to another lobbyist, California attorney Howard Hills, and then forwarded to Abramoff and his then-law firm, Greenberg Traurig, reports the Pacific Daily News.
Hills is facing criminal charges made in a previous indictment in the case, and reportedly is a cooperating witness. He is not named in a Tuesday superseding indictment (PDF), which was provided by KUAM. Meanwhile, the indictment for the first time names Abramoff and the law firm as defendants, the Pacific Daily News explains.
An arraignment is scheduled April 16.
Updated at 5:01 p.m. to add link to Greenberg Traurig's statement.