Blog: Some tribes not really Abramoff victims
"Disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff is off to the hoosegow for another four years after a judge sentenced him today for his role in the tribes-and-bribes scandal. In 2006, you'll recall, Abramoff and his cohort Michael Scanlon pleaded guilty to crimes that resulted in fraud and corruption, and ever since the two have been helping federal prosecutors in an attempt to lessen their punishments. Abramoff received 9 months more than prosecutors asked for.

"The true victims here are the public," Judge Ellen Huvelle of the U.S. District Court for D.C. declared from the bench. "You have impacted severely the public's confidence in the integrity of the government."

Kudos to Huvelle for acknowledging the "true" victims in the scam—although that designation may not sit well with at least one of the tribes, the Saginaw Chippewa of Michigan.

It's hardly a matter of dispute that Abramoff sold the Saginaws and other tribes snake-oil. But Cantu's lament aside, the tribes were hardly innocents. While Abramoff and Scanlon certainly were behind the slick election campaigns of Council members who later pushed business their way, it was these Council members—not Abramoff or Scanlon—who sold the Saginaw down the river."

Get the Story:
Sam Dealey: Who Were Abramoff's Victims? (US News 9/4)

Relevant Documents:
DOJ Press Release

Related Stories:
Abramoff writes letter to judge before sentencing (9/4)
Abramoff set for sentencing in tribal fraud case (9/3)
Tribes want to speak at Abramoff sentencing (9/1)
Abramoff pleads for leniency ahead of sentencing (8/29)
DOJ seeks reduction in sentence for Abramoff (08/28)