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Abramoff Scandal
Abramoff probe extends to Justice Department


Federal investigators are looking into former Justice Department officials who may have had contacts with convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his associates, The Legal Times reports.

One former official has already pleaded guilty in connection with the scandal. Robert Coughlin II admitted he accepted gifts from one of Abramoff's associates in exchange for helping the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians with a $16.3 million grant.

The tribe was cleared for a $9 million grant to build a detention center but wanted more money. Somehow, a high-ranking Justice official overruled a deputy assistant attorney general on the matter, according to documents filed in Coughlin's case.

Some officials connected to the jail matter are now working with former attorney general John Ashcroft at his lobbying firm.

Get the Story:
Jack Abramoff's Ties Ran Deep at the DOJ (The Legal Times 4/28)
Scandal’s tentacles reach back to KC (The Kansas City Star 4/29)

Relevant Documents:
Robert E. Coughlin Plea Deal | Statement of Information

Lobbying Records:
Kevin Ring | Kevin A. Ring | Kevin A. Ring Related Stories:
Choctaw lobbying campaign nets guilty plea (4/23)
Ex-Justice official charged in Abramoff probe (4/22)
Lobbying Report: Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians (6/27)
Choctaws hire three ex-Abramoff lobbyists (6/27)
Choctaws hire lobbyist accused in Abramoff fraud (6/24)
Under scrutiny, Choctaw tribe goes into hiding (6/23)
Committee report on horizon in tribal lobbying scandal (06/23)
Update on Senate hearing into lobbying scandal (6/23)
Mississippi Choctaws focus of Senate lobbying hearing (6/23)
Mississippi Choctaws at center of lobbying hearing (6/22)
Miss Choctaws say gaming cash not used to lobby (05/31)
Gaming leads to new concerns about lobbyists (05/26)
Mississippi Choctaw lawyer referred Abramoff (11/22)
Choctaw Tribe's lobbying documents kept secret (10/4)
Ex-tribal lobbyists slammed in Senate hearing (9/30)
Choctaw chief Martin defends embattled GOP lobbyist (04/09)
GOP lobbyist scores big with tribes (04/03)