Alabama’s Gambling Corruption Trial
WBHM’s Andrew Yeager will follow the month’s long case and offers updates of the unfolding action.
State Senator Harri Anne Smith is an independent from Slocomb. She switched from Republican in 2010 after the party blocked her from the ballot for supporting a Democrat in a congressional race. Smith is accused of changing her position on gambling after receiving campaign contributions from Gilley.
Jim Preuitt is a former Republican state senator from Talladega. He left the Democratic Party in 2010 and did not run for reelection. Preuitt owns an auto dealership. He’s accused of changing his vote on the gambling bill after being offered $2 million dollars in contributions and country music star appearances for campaign rallies.
State Senator Quinton Ross is a Democrat from Montgomery. He’s the director of adult education at Trenholm State Technical College. Ross is accused of asking for campaign funding from gambling interests for his support of the gambling bill.
Larry Means is a former Democratic state senator from Attalla who lost reelection in 2010. He’s accused of asking for $100,000 from gambling interests for his vote on the gambling bill.
Tom Coker is a well-known Montgomery lobbyist whose clients include Milton McGregor. He is accused of handling some of the campaign contributions allegedly offered to legislators.
Robert Geddie is a long time Montgomery lobbyist who co-founded the firm Fine Geddie and Associates. He is accused of handling some of the campaign contributions allegedly offered to legislators and of falsifying records to hide contributions from Milton McGregor.
Joseph “Ray” Crosby works for the Legislative Reference Service, which helps write bills for Alabama legislators. He is accused of making changes to a gambling bill for Milton McGregor, while being paid $3,000 a month by McGregor.
Jay Walker was a spokesman for Country Crossing. He has also worked in Georgia state politics. Walker is accused of making offers of country music star appearances to former State Senator Jim Preuitt on behalf of Country Crossing owner Ronnie Gilley.
Jarrod Massey is a Montgomery lobbyist, owner of the firm Mantra Government. He pleaded guilty in December 2010 to bribing state legislators for their support of gambling legislation. Massey testified for government prosecutors and has already begun serving his sentence.
State Representative Barry Mask is a Republican from Wetumpka. He contacted the FBI after receiving a voice mail from Milton McGregor in Feb. 2010. Mask was concerned because he had not talked to McGregor for some time and heard rumors of votes being bought around gambling legislation. Mask testified about a phone call where he said McGregor tried to bribe him and a fundraiser where lobbyist Robert Geddie showed up uninvited with $5,000 in contributions.
Benjamin Lewis served in the Alabama House until June 2010 when former Governor Bob Riley appointed him Houston County district judge. He was the first legislator to go to the FBI after a March 2009 meeting aimed at promoting the Country Crossing casino hosted by Ronnie Gilley. Lewis testified Gilley became argumentative at the meeting and offered a bribe.