Former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder gives the thumbs up as he enters a federal courthouse in Cincinnati. Photo from WEWS.
Former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder and former GOP leader Matt Borges will both be sentenced to prison in late June.
The felons will be sentenced at 1 p.m. on June 29th and June 30th, respectively, according to court documents.
The pair was convicted in a nearly $61 million scheme to pass a nuclear bailout bill, House Bill 6, at the expense of taxpayers.
A jury found that Householder and Borges, beyond a reasonable doubt, participated in the largest public corruption case in state history, a racketeering scheme that left four men guilty and another dead by suicide.
The men are both facing up to 20 years for the racketeering charge, but Householder could get more, according to Case Western Reserve University criminal law professor Michael Benza.
“There is the ability of a judge to enhance within the guidelines to find that a defendant has been untruthful during the proceedings, and that does often happen,” Benza said. “I also think that the judge is probably inclined to sentence it to high-range, given the magnitude of what happened in this case, not just the money that was involved, which is astronomical, but also the violation of both the public trust.”
But Householder may have a way to lessen his sentence. There is a specific provision in the federal sentencing guidelines that allows for defendants to cooperate post-conviction.
“It’s very possible that both Householder and or Borges will be talking to the government about how to get that sentencing decreased by helping them,” Benza said.
This comes after both men missed their post-verdict motion deadline in late April. News 5 reached out to each legal team in early May and asked if they were no longer going for appeals or if they have started to work with the government to get a better sentencing.
“We did not file any post-verdict motions and will instead proceed to sentencing at a yet-to-be-determined date,” Householder attorney Steven Bradley said. “We will most certainly pursue an appeal following sentencing.”
Borges’ team did not respond. After the guilty verdict, he said he was planning to appeal.
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