Rep. Jefferson Indicted on 16 Counts

Posted June 4, 2007 at 1:20pm

After a two-year probe, Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.) was indicted on 16 counts by a federal grand jury on Monday.

A clerk for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia confirmed the indictment was delivered at about 2 p.m. on Monday. No details were immediately available, but the Justice Department was set to hold a 3:30 p.m. press conference with top officials.

Federal prosecutors had been investigating whether Jefferson, who was re-elected in 2006, took improper payments from the telecommunications firm iGate and attempted to bribe public officials in Nigeria and Ghana. The founder of iGate, Vernon Jackson, and Brett Pfeffer, a former Jefferson staffer, have pleaded guilty to bribing the Congressman.

There had been speculation that a separate lawsuit into the disputed May 2006 raid on Jefferson’s Rayburn House office had slowed the federal bribery investigation.

— Rachel Van Dongen