Case against DeLay associate dismissed

A Texas judge dismissed a civil case against a major fundraiser for House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas) last Friday.

The federal district-court judge dismissed the case brought by two Texas Democrats against John Colyandro, the former executive director of the Texans for a Republican Majority Political Action Committee (TRMPAC).

The judge, Lee Yeakel, ruled that lawyers for the two Democrats failed to prove that Colyandro had knowingly broken Texas election law in using corporate contributions to fund campaign ads.

Texas election law prohibits the use of corporate money in races for state office.

In his opinion, Yeakel wrote that the petition against Colyandro and his three co-defendants “fails to allege any facts that Colyandro intentionally or even knowingly violated the applicable sections of the Texas Election Code.”

In May, another Texas judge ruled against Colyandro and co-defendants Jim Ellis and Warren Robold in a separate civil case, ruling that the three had violated state election law by failing to report $684,507 in corporate donations.

Colyandro and Ellis also face criminal money-laundering charges following indictments last year by Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle.

Patrick O’Connor

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