Will Charges Against Michigan House Rep Charged With Bribery & Extortion be Dismissed?

dollar note with no bribe seal
Inman is accused of soliciting money in return for his vote when it came time to block the repeal of Michigan’s Prevailing Wage Law.

Nothing seems to inflame the masses more than the fall of the high and mighty. When regular folks break the law or make mistakes, people just shake their heads. But when cops, priests, and politicians break the law it’s amazing how quickly people take up arms against them. Suddenly every move they make is scrutinized, every decision picked apart by the media. And the case of Michigan House Representative Larry Inman is no different.

What is Inman accused of doing?

Inman, from Grand Traverse County, was indicted last month by a federal grand jury. He is now facing federal charges of bribery, attempted extortion, and lying to an FBI agent. According to court documents, Inman was soliciting campaign funds in exchange for his vote.

Records show text messages and a recorded phone call that Inman sent to lobbyists and representatives with the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights. Apparently Inman encouraged the union to gather campaign contributions from other labor groups, and told them that the money would ensure votes to block the repeal of Michigan’s Prevailing Wage Law in 2018.

What exactly did Inman say to the union that was so bad?

The indictment shows that the exact text Inman sent to a lobbyist representing the union and Lisa Canada, the union’s political director was as follows: “We only have 12, people to block (the vote.) You said all 12 will get $30,000 each to help there (sic) campaigns.

That did not happen, we will get a ton of pressure on this vote. I would suggest maxing out on all 12 (representatives’ campaign committee contributions), or at least doubling what you have given them on Tuesday, asap.” He then concluded with, “We never had this discussion.”

But Inman says he’s done nothing wrong!

In the end, the union didn’t contribute to Inman’s campaign funds, and a few days later he voted to repeal the law. So because he never received the money, and didn’t change his vote, Inman is saying he did nothing illegal. “I did not do those things that they have accused me to do, and my integrity and honesty is above any approachability on any bribe,” Inman said to Bridge in an interview.

“Really? Do you think that I would stoop that low? No, never.” So what did he mean by those messages he sent to the union? He won’t say, on the advice of his attorney, only claiming that he does in fact have an explanation that he will share when the time is right. So, we’re repeating a lesson we often preach….LAWYER UP! 

So what’s happened to Inman since then?

Inman appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Phillip J. Green, where his defense attorney announced that he would be pleading not guilty on all three charges. Judge Green released Inman on a $25,000 unsecured bond, but also ordered that he turn in his passport, as well as his enhanced driver’s license, which lets him to travel to both Mexico and Canada. However, the consequences go deeper than just the arrest.

These charges have affected Inman’s career, as fellow lawmakers drafted a resolution urging him to resign, and he was removed from the House Republican Caucus. Speaker of the House Lee Chatfield also stripped Inman of his committee assignments and asked him to resign. We’re not sure what ever happened to the Constitutional protection of being presumed innocent until proven guilty. 

And now his lawyers is saying the charges should be dismissed!

According to Inman’s criminal defense defense attorney, for the prosecutor to prove attempted extortion, there would have to be an effect on commerce. (Don’t ask. It’s legalese that relates to federal jurisdiction under the commerce clause of the federal constitution.) All that would have happened in this case was that Inman’s vote would have sent the prevailing wage law issue to the voters of Michigan.

With regards to the bribery charge, his attorney says it can only stick if the feds can prove that the defendant is an “agent” of an organization receiving federal funding. The Michigan House of Representatives doesn’t receive federal funds, making this charge pointless. And as for the allegation of lying to the feds? Well, if the federal government doesn’t have jurisdiction in the bribery charge, then anything said during questioning in connection with that charge should be thrown out. 

Allegations and charges can destroy your career, even if they’re not true!

As top criminal defense attorneys who’ve been in business for many years, we’ve helped lots of people who’ve been accused of bribery, corruption, and lying to the police. We know how damaging these kinds of allegations can be to a professional career, and how quickly rumors spread.

You could lose your job, and even your professional license, faster than you can say Jiminy Cricket! So if you’re worried about protecting your professional reputation in the face of allegations and charges, call The Kronzek Firm at 866 766 5245. Our aggressive criminal defense attorneys are available 24/7 to help you protect yourself and your career.

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