Monday, April 23, 2007

Circuit court releases written opinion in Thompson case

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago released its written opinion on the Georgia Thompson case Friday.

The court overturned Thompson's conviction two weeks before and released her from an 18-month prison sentence. She returned to work at the Department of Administration today, taking the position of assistant to the director of the Bureau of Risk Management. Thompson will earn a a salary of $77,300, plus full benefits. She will also receive $67,161.46 in back pay.

In the written opinion overturning her conviction, Chief Judge Frank Easterbrook wrote that Thompson was convicted of, at best, a mistake in calculating the scores of the travel companies involved, and that it could be argued a mistake was never made in the first place. Easterbrook also wrote that even a deliberate error is "a civil rather than a criminal transgression."

"What 'fraud' did Thompson commit, and who was the victim?," Easterbrook wrote. "Thompson did not bilk the state out of any money or pocket any of the funds that were supposed to be used to buy travel."

See the written decision:
http://www.ca7.uscourts.gov/tmp/2I0TLBUE.pdf

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