September 2nd, 2009
11:51 AM ET
7 years ago

Traficant released from prison

ROCHESTER, Minnesota (CNN) - Former Rep. James Traficant was released from federal prison Wednesday.

CNN affiliates KTTC and KAAL report that Traficant - sporting knee socks, shorts and a t-shirt, with his hair pulled back in a ponytail - left the Federal Medical Center prison facility in Rochester, Minnesota Wednesday morning in a cab.

Despite earlier reports that the nine-term Democratic congressman was headed for the local Greyhound station, the morning bus headed for his hometown area of Youngstown, Ohio left without him on board, and his name did not appear on the manifest.

Traficant served just over seven years in federal prison for charges that included obstruction of justice, tax evasion and bribery.

–CNN All Platform Journalist Chris Welch contributed to this story

(updated 12:30 pm with new information)

Filed under: James Traficant • Popular Posts
soundoff (108 Responses)
  1. victim of republican greed

    Here is the chance for the intellectual light weights who watch Fox entertainment to respond. Go get him.

    September 2, 2009 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  2. Reformed Republican

    He did his time, now...

    Lets put Bush, that "Dick" Cheney, Gonzo, Rummy and the rest of that rethuglican anti-constitution, war mongering American soldier killing cabal on trial so they can do theirs.


    September 2, 2009 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  3. Fair is Fair

    Dude... what's with that hair???????????????

    September 2, 2009 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  4. Truth-Bomb Thrower

    Traficant and Blagojevich, the REAL soul of the democratic party.

    September 2, 2009 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  5. bill

    He can still have a bright future ahead of him. He can become a highly paid lobbyist like so many of his former buddies, or he can land a spot on "Dancing with the Stars" like "twinkle toes DeLay".

    September 2, 2009 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Dang!! On a Greyhound bus headed home; you mean none of the folks that 'benefitted' from his 'creative' tax-filing showed up to offer the man a ride home? Tsk.

    September 2, 2009 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  7. John H

    Great!! One down and only thousands to go. I'll bet almost every American would appreciate seing the list of the FIFTY TWO THOUSAND American citizens who have secret Swiss bank accounts almost certainly opened for one reason – TO AVOID INCOME TAXES.

    I'll bet one other thing. Unless someone files a lawsuit under the Freedom-of -Information Act, the names of these tax evaders will never be released to the American public. And do you know why? Because releasing these names would reveal some of the most influential people in America – probably highly regarded families and politicians.

    Good luck!

    September 2, 2009 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  8. kaleto

    Look for him to start running for office tomorrow...
    Let's hope this is one crook who remains unemployed.

    September 2, 2009 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  9. Loup Garou 782

    The way things are going either barkey obama will make him some kind of czar over something or he will be reelectedto congress.

    September 2, 2009 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  10. ThinkAgain

    Was he allowed to wear that terrible toupe while in prison?

    September 2, 2009 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  11. Traficant to join Obama

    Whit Traficant's experience with obstruction of justice, tax evasion and bribery, he is a lock to be named to the Obama White House team

    September 2, 2009 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  12. DaveMcc

    His hair is awesome ... FACT

    September 2, 2009 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  13. Wow

    That is some crazy hair...

    September 2, 2009 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  14. Greg, San Francisco, CA

    He'll now be running for President – of Hair Club for Men.

    September 2, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  15. Doug, New Jersey

    A real liberals liberal he is. This is pretty funny though, he went to prison for obstruction of justice, tax evasion and bribery, I mean aren't these exactly what the average Democrat expects from their Congressmen and why they are Democrats and support Democrats in the first place?

    September 2, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  16. Jenny

    If only Traficant's place could be taken by Charlie Rangel, another thief in Democrat clothing.

    September 2, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  17. Avi shlomo

    and other thieves and thugs gets away with just little no prison

    September 2, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  18. tony

    A democrat convicted of tax evasion....I would like to nominate him as treasury secretary. Thats why democrats don't care if we raise taxes.....they don't pay them........just like welfare

    September 2, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  19. Jeff in Jersey

    I always loved the dead possum he kept on his head!!!!!

    September 2, 2009 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  20. kevin John Gil

    So when will he launch his (Democratic) re-election campaign?

    September 2, 2009 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  21. Dan

    Figures, a Democrap!

    September 2, 2009 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  22. Tom Bachman

    I'm sure there's a job for him in this administration. I wonder what he looks like w/o the dead possum perched on his head??

    September 2, 2009 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  23. Hopeful Optimist

    What a dramatic fall from grace, this once influential legislator with relative power. Probably used to be driven in limos, now taking a cab to the Greyhound station. Only in America can one's rise and fall be so instant, so steep, so public.

    Don Henley's right - we do live in a graceless age. There's nothing pretty about it. Goes back to the oldest truism of all, love of money is the root of all evil. Why is it that we all know this, and yet we are all vulnerable when the right situation comes along? ALL of us, without exception. Do you think Bernie Madoff, sitting in a jail cell for the rest of his life, would like to have a do-over?

    September 2, 2009 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  24. Mississippi Mike

    Felon=Democrat. How many Republican felons can you think of? Not too many...

    September 2, 2009 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  25. Padraig

    Have you noticed that most of these corrupted convicted politicians come from the Chicago area.

    September 2, 2009 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
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