Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Biskupic Answers Thompson Motion for Acquittal

U.S. Attorney Stephen Biskupic filed a response this week to Georgia Thompson's request for an acquittal or new trial. Thompson is the former DOA employee who was convicted in June of steering travel contract bids to Adelman Travel, a business whose owners contributed to Gov. Jim Doyle's campaign.

In the response, Biskupic lays out a blow-by-blow account of the trial and evidence presented to refute Thompson attorney Stephen Hurley's assertion that the jury convicted her without "any direct or 'smoking gun' evidence."

Biskupic says that Thompson knew of the connection between Doyle and Adelman, and that motivated her actions.

"Georgia Thompson was aware of that relationship, perceived Adelman Travel to be the politically favored choice of the Doyle Administration, and as a result took extreme affirmative steps to rig the bid in favor of Adelman Travel," says Biskupic in the filing.

"That there was a significant political connection between Adelman Travel andthe upper-levels of state government - including Governor Doyle and his staff, as well as DOA Secretary Mark Marotta - cannot seriously be questioned," says Biskupic.

Thompson's own statements remove the jury's decision from the realm of inference to the level of proof, Biskupic argues.

"The pervasiveness of these connections strongly supports an inference that Thompson knew that they existed. And her statements remove any doubt as to whether Thompson believed that Adelman Travel was the administration’s politically favored choice. While the travel contracts were being evaluated, Thompson told others involved in the evaluation process that, for political reasons, the contract could not go to Omega."

Hurley had no comment on the filing today. Thompson is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 22. She faces a maximum of 20 years in prison.

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