Friday, April 20, 2012
Stanford Receiver Battles With State Politicians for Return of Millions in Campaign Contributions
Bruce Carton April 19, 2012
The often-criticized efforts of the court-appointed receiver in the Allen Stanford case to recover all possible funds for victims has taken a quirky turn in Stanford's home state of Texas. The Houston Chronicle reports that prior to his arrest, Stanford was a major political donor in the state, who along with his employees gave nearly $2.4 million to politicians in both parties since 2001. The receiver wants the politicians to return these "ill-gotten" campaign contributions for the benefit of the victims of Stanford's Ponzi scheme, but is running into significant resistance.
The Chronicle reports that some of the recipients of these contributions such as Texas Republican Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn previously gave the contributions they received from Stanford to charity when they learned of the scandal. Kevin Sadler, a lawyer for the receiver, told the Chronicle that giving the money to charity was a "meaningless act"
that will not stop the receiver from trying to recoup those funds from the politicians. "The fact they gave money away to some other charity doesn't mean they're not in possession of money that doesn't belong to them," Sadler said.
To date, four Texas lawmakers have elected to return the contribution received from Stanford to the receiver as demanded. Many more have not complied, including "five national party committees, one Texas-based PAC, both Texas senators and six Texas representatives...." The receiver has now filed lawsuits against five political party committees demanding the return of the contributions. According to the Chronicle, a court ruled last year that the committees must repay the contributions, plus attorney's fees. The committees' appeal of the ruling will reportedly be argued on May 1.