Who Will Be Served: Justice or the Powerful Political Elites?

July 7, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The sentencing hearing for Mike Hubbard will be held this Friday at 10:00 AM, in the court of Judge Jacob Walker, III. If Hubbard is treated differently than any other criminal, or if he is shown the slightest bit of deference because of his position, the peoples’ trust in law and State government will continue to be shattered.

When Hubbard was under investigation, a vast majority were convinced he would never be indicted because they believed a Republican controlled Attorney General’s Office would never indict one of their own. Once indicted, Hubbard, as well as the majority of politicos and citizens, thought he would never stand trial because the courts couldn’t be trusted to bring such a powerful politician to heel. Finally, most didn’t trust the jury system, thinking that they would be swayed by Hubbard’s political standing in the community, or that his allies just might buy-off a juror or two. Hubbard was indicted, he did stand trial, and a jury of his peers found him guilty of 12 felony public corruption charges.
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Representative Moore Wants to Replace His Former Boss

July 7, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Another candidate has thrown his hat into the ring to replace disgraced former Speaker, Mike Hubbard. The new contender is none other than Hubbard’s faithful lieutenant, Rep. Barry Moore (R-Enterprise).

In an email to fellow House Republicans, Moore says his priorities as Speaker would include, tax cuts, challenging federal gun laws, more cuts in government, protect farming, coal and the unborn.

Named as one of the most conservative lawmakers in the House by Yellowhammer News, Moore says, “I believe we need leadership who will embrace and advance a conservative agenda that unapologetically puts working Alabamians first.”
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State Recommends 18 Years for Hubbard

July 1, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Policial Reporter

MONTGOMERY—On Thursday, the State filed its Brief In Support Of Sentencing Recommendation for Mike Hubbard, who will be sentenced on July 8, for 12 felony counts of public corruption.

The State recommends Hubbard be sentenced on each of his 12 felony Ethics Law convictions to an 18-year base sentence, split to serve 5 years in prison, followed by a term of supervised probation equal to the time remaining. It also asked the Court to require Hubbard to pay $1,125,000.00 in restitution (Hubbard’s ill-gotten gain); the maximum fine of $360,000.00 ($30,000.00 per count); the maximum amount to the Crime Victim’s Compensation Fund, $120,000.00 ($10,000.00 per count); and court costs and fees as determined by this Court.
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Hubbard Sells Auburn Network Building (Guess when?)

June 29, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—On the same day Mike Hubbard was found guilty of 12 felony counts of public corruption, the building that houses his Auburn Network, LLC, sold for a cash price of $810,000.00 to New Life Properties, LLC.

Hubbard was co-owner of the building located at 197 E University Drive in Auburn.

The titled owner at the time of the sale was Weagle, LLC., which is a North Carolina based LLC in which Hubbard is a named partner, according to State filing. The seller’s closing documents were signed by Mark H. Reese as member of Weagle, LLC.
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Last Day of Hubbard Trial More Witnesses Were on Hand

June 22, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Perhaps the most damning piece of evidence in the trial of Mike Hubbard, was the proffer he signed in March, 2014. Certainly, when Lead Prosecutor, Matt Hart, revealed that Hubbard’s dead “close” friend was actually alive, that was the final nail in his coffin.

After Hubbard, the State called Senate President Pro Tem, Del Marsh, its only rebuttal witness. However, there were other rebuttal witnesses on hand, but the State must have realized the jury had enough information to decide the case. Those in waiting were, former House Rep. Blaine Galliher, Hubbard’s former Chief of Staff, Josh Blades and State Ethics Commission’s chief counsel, Hugh Evans, III.
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Loyalty Pledge Impediment to Electing Honest Speaker

June 20, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—At the urging of then Speaker of the House, Mike Hubbard, in 2014 the Steering Committee of the Alabama Republican Party added a loyalty oath to the qualifying packets given to each candidate running for office under the GOP banner. The pledge was added according to a steering committee members after the qualifying rules had been approved. Hubbard, who was then under indictment on 23 felony counts of public corruption, wanted to ensure that House Republicans would reelect him as Speaker, and the fealty clause was a means to that end.
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State May Come After Hubbard’s Assets

June 17, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Under the 2014 Forfeiture Act, the State can seize Mike Hubbard’s assets, because they were used in the commission of a crime. Hubbard, on June 10, was found guilty of twelve felony counts of public corruption for which he faces up to twenty years in State prison, and $30,000 in fines for each count.

The Criminal Proceeds Forfeiture Act provides that “any property, proceeds, or instrumentality of every kind, used or intended for use in the course of, derived from, or realized through the commission of a felony offense, as defined in this act, or as inducement or attempt or conspiracy to commit such offenses, is subject to civil forfeiture.”
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Remembering Those Who “Like Mike” and Wanted To Protect Him

June 16, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Fifteen members of the State House of Representatives, one Senator and a US Congressman attended the pep rally for Mike Hubbard the day after he was indicted on 23 felony counts of public corruption.

In February of this year, 37 House members signed a letter to US Attorney General Loretta Lynch, asking her to investigation State’s Attorney General Luther Strange. There were ten accusations against General Strange of “misconduct…incompetence or willful neglect of office.”
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Jockeying for Speaker

June 15, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Before Mike Hubbard’s political body was even cold, Business Council of Alabama (BCA) Chairman Billy Canary and former Gov. Bob Riley were jockeying to place their “next guy” in the Speaker’s chair.

Reps. Mac McCutcheon, Mike Jones, Victor Gaston, Bill Poole, Lynn Greer, Phil Williams and David Standridge are the names most often mentioned. With the exception of Poole, all these men are contemplating a run for the spot previously held by Mike Hubbard.
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More Indictments Likely

June 14, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—When asked if there would be more indictments, Acting Attorney General W. Van Davis said, “No Comment.” That statement should strike fear in the heart of anyone named in the counts on which Mike Hubbard was found guilty.

Hubbard was found guilty on seven counts of receiving a thing of value from a lobbyist or a principal under Section 36-25-5.1 (a) which forbids “[a] public employee or public official or family member of the public employee or family member of the public official shall solicit or receive a thing of value from a lobbyist, subordinate of a lobbyist, or principal.”
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