Tom DeLay’s conviction overturned

A Texas appellate court has overturned the 2010 conviction of former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay’s (R-Texas) for money laundering.

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The court said it was acquitting DeLay due to insufficient evidence.

Since his conviction three years ago, DeLay has remained a free man as an appellate court considered the case. 

He was sentenced to three years in prison for his alleged role in a scheme to influence elections in Texas. 

DeLay was accused of laundering more than $100,000 and conspiring to commit money laundering for that amount or more during the 2002 election cycle. Those offenses would violate election laws. 

The court, however, concluded there was insufficient evidence to support the conviction. 

DeLay had been initially indicted with political fundraisers John Colyandro and James Ellis. The state initially accused them of “participating in a scheme to channel unlawful corporate political contributions to candidates for the Texas House of Representatives in 2002.” 

Later, DeLay was reindicted on the charges involving more than $100,000. 

A jury found him guilty during a trial in November 2010. 

DeLay was one of the most powerful politicians in Washington in the early 2000s and became known as "the hammer" for his tight control of the Republican majority.

He resigned from his seat in 2006 after serving in Congress since 1985.  

At the time, some analysts said DeLay’s downfall resulted in the 2006 Democratic take over of the House.