Hearing Previews Upcoming Political Corruption Trial

By John S. Adams, Editor-in-Chief

District Judge Ray Dayton on Monday heard more than three hours of testimony in his Anaconda courtroom as he considers competing pre-trial arguments in a high-profile political corruption lawsuit. Commissioner of Political Practices Jonathan Motl is suing Republican state Rep. Art Wittich alleging Wittich illegally coordinated with third-party nonprofit political groups during his 2010 campaign for the Montana Senate.

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Back and forth motions hurl allegations in lead-up to Wittich corruption trial

By John S. Adams, Editor-in-Chief

With a trial date fast approaching, the two sides in a high-profile political corruption lawsuit are hurling sharply worded accusations of wrongdoing in recently filed court documents. Both sides are calling on the judge to sanction their opponent in conflicting legal filings that set a bitter tone for the courtroom showdown scheduled for March 28 in Helena.

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Judge orders preservation of Cebull email file

California District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers on Wednesday ordered the investigative file containing the emails that cost disgraced Chief Montana U.S. District Judge Richard Cebull his job must be preserved until 2019. Last November four plaintiffs – Four Directions, Indian People’s Action, Sara Plains Feather, and Clifford Bird In Ground – filed a petition in California District Court asking the judge to order the Judicial Conference of the United States and Cathy Catterson, the executive of the 9th U.S. Circuit of Appeals, to preserve the email file.

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Attorney General intervenes in “false claims” case against former COPP Dave Gallik

Attorney General Tim Fox’s office alerted a Missoula court Thursday that the state will intervene in a lawsuit against former Commissioner of Political Practices Dave Gallik. Gallik resigned as the state’s top political and ethics watchdog in January 2012 after the Great Falls Tribune reported allegations made by Gallik’s former staff members that Gallik, an attorney, was conducting private law practice work out of his state office.

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