Florida Won’t Bring Charges Against Ex-Rep. Foley

Posted September 19, 2008 at 11:27am

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement announced Thursday that it concluded its investigation of former Rep. Mark Foley (R-Fla.) and will not bring charges against the ex-lawmaker.

The investigation began in September 2006 amid allegations that Foley exchanged lewd online messages with underage House pages.

According to a statement issued Thursday, Florida officials determined there was insufficient evidence to show that Foley had violated any state laws in the incidents.

“FDLE conducted as thorough and comprehensive investigation as possible considering Congress and Mr. Foley denied us access to critical data,” FDLE Commissioner Gerald Bailey said. “Should additional information arise which is pertinent to this case, we will ensure it is appropriately investigated.”

The report issued Thursday notes that Florida investigators attempted to search Foley’s House-issued computer equipment, but were denied access by the House Office of the General Counsel, which cited the Constitution’s Speech or Debate Clause.

Although Foley received a copy of the computer data, the former lawmaker declined to provide that information to Florida officials. According to the report, Foley’s attorneys did agree to conduct a search for explicit attachments or images and provide those results to the Justice Department.

“FDLE has received no indication from DOJ/FBI that there is anything of interest in the ‘non-Congressional’ portion of Foley’s computers that would constitute a violation of Florida law,” the report states.