July 31st, 2008
01:45 PM ET
3 years ago

Indicted senator pleads not guilty

Stevens pleaded not guilty.
Stevens pleaded not guilty.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Indicted Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska pleaded not guilty Thursday to charges of scheming to conceal thousands of dollars worth of gifts from an oil-services company.

His lawyer requested that the trial be moved to Alaska from Washington, and that it take place before November because Stevens is up for re-election.

"I want to make a request if at all possible that the trial be in October so that he can clear his name before the general elections," said the attorney, Brendan Sullivan.

He proposed moving the trial to Alaska because a majority of the witnesses are there and the events in question took place there.

Judge Emmet Sullivan, who is not related to Stevens' attorney, said he thought Washington is an appropriate location for the trial but that he will entertain a motion to move it to Alaska.

Stevens was indicted Tuesday on seven counts of filing false reports on his mandatory Senate financial disclosure forms.

The federal indictment says Veco Energy paid for hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of work on Stevens' home over a period of about seven years, and Stevens failed to report it.

Stevens, 84, the longest-serving Republican in Senate history, has not spoken during the hearing; his attorney entered the not-guilty plea on his behalf.

Dressed in a light gray suit, Stevens seemed relaxed before the hearing began and smiled after he sat down at the defense table to chat with his legal team.

Two benches in the federal district courthouse were filled by reporters from television, radio and wire services.


Filed under: Ted Stevens
soundoff (87 Responses)
  1. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    I know that if I were to do what he did, I would lose my job and end up in jail. I hope that if the evidence proves that he knew what was going on and failed to report it, that he get nailed.

    To the people of the great state of Alaska: I hope you really pick someone else in your Republican primary and kiss Uncle Ted good bye since he won't be seen for a while if convicted. He needs to understand that what he was doing was corruption and corruption of our very system that he was there to serve.

    July 31, 2008 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  2. Necie in OKC

    GOP at its best! No wonder gas is so high. Our politicians must be held accountable.

    July 31, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  3. California Gold

    Why of course he claims he's not guilty. He also thinks he's the Hulk.

    July 31, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  4. Marie in California

    I hate Ted Stevens and all of the Republican corruption.

    This Republican corruption is so characteristic of a party run by George Bush and John McCain.

    I love Barack Obama!

    July 31, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  5. Chut Pata

    He is a small fry in the big Oil Mafia Crime Family. Compared to the crimes made by criminals in WH, he looks innocent and therefore pleads not guilty.

    July 31, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  6. Tim

    Finally the good ol boy network is exposed. Nail him to the wall!!!

    July 31, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  7. MD FOR OBAMA

    Who else is getting kickbacks from oil companies. I want names Now!

    July 31, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  8. Rise America Rise

    Typical republican, can't trust any of them.

    July 31, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  9. Al, NY NY

    Request #1–denied. Request #2–denied. He might as well start walking on his "bridge to nowhere" and take a step off the edge. He is toast. I love watching Republicans self-destruct!!!

    July 31, 2008 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  10. DEBBY, NJ

    A FELON CANNOT VOTE IN THE ELECTIONS ... HOW BOUT THAT !!!
    BARACK THE VOTE AMERICA...

    July 31, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  11. Livonia, MI

    The fact that he pleaded not guilty ownly shows that he is using his rights as a defendant. Everyone should plead not-guilty unless you can work out a sweet deal with the prosecution. That is how the system works. Unfortunately, this trial is going to cost taxpayers alot of money.

    July 31, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  12. Kelly

    of course he pleads not guily he's a republican

    July 31, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  13. GERRY

    LET HIM PLEAD WHATEVER HE WANTS TO PLEAD BUT LET JUSTICE HOLD IT'S GROUND AND IF HE IS FOUND GUILTY THEN HE SHOULD BE PUNISHED AS GUILTY AND GIVEN THE MAX SENTENCE THAT LAW WILL ALLOW, BECAUSE HE IS OLD, BEEN IN THE SENATE FOR YEARS SHOULD NOT ENTER THE EQUATION.
    POLITICIANS NEED TO REALIZE THEY ARE NOT ABOVE THE LAW.

    July 31, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  14. Andres

    Moving it to Alaska, where Stevens possibly has influence, is a terrible idea.

    July 31, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  15. Sensible Cape Coral FL

    No one has ever really defined "Family Values" All we know is that the Republicans are better at them than Democrats. Makes you wonder, doesn't it?

    July 31, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  16. Kelby from Houston, TX

    WoW Senator Ted Stevens. I cannot believe that this man is guilty. It's like he was the last good republican and now.... I tell you, this has been the worst of times for the GOP.

    July 31, 2008 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  17. Linda in Va

    Did anyone expect him to take responsibility? No, he's pleaded not guilty. Overhaul this govenment. Don't allow we the people to keep paying the price for where our elected officials take us, including the president. Look around you and see what is happening within our country. Banks are going under. Housing is in crisis. Gas prices are through the roof with recond breaking profits for Exxonbush. States are in trouble. Businesses are in trouble. Jobs don't exist. A recession won't last long because the depression is right around the corner.

    July 31, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  18. norml

    everyone in prison is innocent,too.

    July 31, 2008 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  19. bill for barack

    If Stevens is innocent then Dubya is a genius and McSame's p.o.w. experience really does make him fit presidential material.
    Unfortunately noone of the above is true. Meet the 3 stooges.

    July 31, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  20. Concerned Citizen, IN

    Yea, he wants it moved to Alaska where the people love him with the ridiculous amounts of money he has pumped into the economy up there. You can't tell me he won't get a more favorable trial up there.

    My theory is that he knowingly accepted the remodeling and honestly felt in his heart he wasn't doing anything wrong. Given his spending history on the approprations committee, I don't see how he could believe it any other way.

    It doesn't mean he isn't wrong for doing it, he just probably believes it is his right as a senator to do whatever he pleases and not have to worry about reporting it to the pesky senate financial disclosure. In the good ol days when he started this sort of thing was perfectly allowable.

    July 31, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  21. bulldog

    Of course he wouldn't admit to being guilty. He's an "experienced" politician. He knows how to lie and manipulate as well as anyone.

    July 31, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  22. Jeff Brown

    The Republicans are reaping what they sowed...

    July 31, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  23. Travis

    King George will say the same thing when he's brought to trial

    July 31, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  24. Matt, Manchester, CT

    Cant' wait to see all the hypocrites come out of the woodwork and jump on this guy while they excused that congressman who had all that cash stuffed in his freezer. I say let them get tossed during the election, then see what sticks to the wall legally.

    July 31, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  25. jfs Memhis, Tn

    McCain/Stevens 2008/2012 A team with experience. A team you
    can trust. Go Republicans

    July 31, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
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