Feature

Bribery scandal blows open

The week's news at a glance.

Juneau, Alaska

The chief executive of Alaska’s largest oil-field services company pleaded guilty this week to bribing current and former state legislators. Bill Allen, CEO of VECO Corp., admitted he gave more than $400,000 to various legislators, including a $243,000 “consulting fee” to a state senator who’d done no consulting. State Rep. Vic Kohring, former House Speaker Pete Kott, and former state Rep. Bruce Weyrauch, all Republicans, were indicted last week on related extortion and bribery charges. The three have pleaded not guilty. According to the indictment, Allen bribed the legislators to obtain their votes on legislation he favored. After Allen handed over one payment to Kott, prosecutors said, Allen told him, “I own your ass.”

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