Prison cells are waiting for those who use bribery to change laws!
Business as usual does not include the bribery of state lawmakers! Former State Representative, Terry Spicer pled guilty to one count of accepting bribes. Ronnie Gilley, the developer of Country Crossings Bingo Casino entered a guilty plea as to multiple counts involving bribery in exchange for gaming legislation votes. A third defendant, Jarrod Massey, a casino lobbyist, also pled guilty to multiple counts involving bribery for legislative votes.
Money talks in every country of the world. Some people who are loaded with profits, resort to bribery when they see no other way to change prohibitive laws. However, at his sentencing, Gilley fully acknowledged the wrongfulness of his actions, without rationalizing the cause. Gilley did not mention the fact that he reasonably feared that his business was about to be terminated by former Gov. Bob Riley. The casino developer fully understands that there are no excuses for corruption.
Political Corruption at the Heart of Bingo
Gilley testified for the state at the corruption trials of and other defendants, all of whom were acquitted regardless of Gilley’s testimony. The prosecutor recommended leniency in sentencing Gilley due to his full cooperation with law enforcement and the judicial system. At his sentencing on July 16, 2012, Gilley made clear that corruption is pervasive in Alabama. He fully confirms the prosecutor’s perception that bribery undermines the American legislative process and robs citizens of their trust in elected officials.
Ronnie Gilley is, above all else, a positive and forward-thinking individual. In his comments to reporters after the sentencing, Gilley expressed his concern regarding the BamaJam Farms which he has worked hard to develop. He believes that the BamaJam Farms will contribute to the establishment of Alabama as a tourist mecca. Gilley also hopes that the sentencing of the trio will result in the initiation of the end of Alabama corruption. He wants to move beyond the issues of his case and see some good result from all of the intense trauma. The developer of the Country Crossings Bingo Casino has proven himself to be quite a strong, honest and impressive individual.
Terry Spicer, former State Representative
All three of the defendants and their respective families have been completely traumatized by the case against them. Terry Spicer chose to rationalize his receipt of bribes by characterizing them as gifts from family friend Jarrod Massey. Spicer stated to the Court that his guilty plea was the result of the lack of sufficient funds with which to fight the charges against him. However, in answer to the judge’s pointed question during sentencing, Spicer admitted that he is not innocent. In the moment of judgment, some rise above, and others slither away.
Ronnie Gilley received the largest sentence. He will be incarcerated for almost seven years, and is required to forfeit $200,000. This prison sentence is 40% of the Federal Guidelines. The judge took several factors into consideration, including Gilley’s cooperation with the investigation into legislative vote-buying. Jarrod Massey was sentenced to 5½ years in prison, and is required to forfeit $20,000.
His sentence was lighter than the Federal Guidelines, due in part to his cooperation with the legal authorities. Terry Spicer was given a prison sentence of almost five years. He was also fined $40,000. Bribery is never to be sanctioned, as American freedom is dependent upon the lack of bias in the actions of legislators. In the words of Baretta: “Don’t do the crime, if you can’t do the time.”