Householder looks for new attorney while 4 charged with him in federal bribery case plead not guilty

Householder looks for new attorney while 4 charged with him in federal bribery case plead not guilty
Ohio lawmaker Larry Householder and four others are charged in connection with what federal officials say is likely the $60 million bribery scheme in the state's history.

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Ohio lawmaker Larry Householder received a two week court delay from a federal magistrate judge Thursday so he can find a new attorney to represent him in what authorities say is likely the state’s biggest bribery and money laundering scheme ever.

Four others accused in the corruption case involving a billion dollar nuclear plant bailout appeared for arraignments via video before U.S. Magistrate Judge Karen Litkovitz.

  • Mathew Borges, 48, of Bexley, a lobbyist who previously served as chair of the Ohio Republican Party;
  • Jeffrey Longstreth, 44, of Columbus, Householder’s longtime campaign and political strategist;
  • Neil Clark, 67, of Columbus, a lobbyist who owns and operates Grant Street Consultants and previously served as budget director for the Ohio Republican Caucus; and
  • Juan Cespedes, 40, of Columbus, a multi-client lobbyist.
  • Generation Now, a corporate entity registered as a 501(c)(4) social welfare organization, also is charged.

The same morning the indictments were announced, House members voted Householder out of his leadership role and approved a new one, State Rep. Bob Cupp, R-Lima.

Householder remains a state representative and is on the fall ballot for re-election.

He is looking for a new attorney after his lawyers at Taft, Stettinius & Hollister in Columbus filed court records earlier this week telling the judge they want to withdraw from the case.

They cited a conflict of interest involving another client, who is not identified in court records.

“I became aware of an ongoing matter that creates a substantial risk that Taft’s ability to consider, recommend, or carry out an appropriate course of action for both clients will be materially limited by Taft’s responsibilities to the other client,” attorney David Thomas said an affidavit.

The law firm also has offices in Cincinnati, northern Kentucky, Dayton, Cleveland, Delaware (Ohio), Indianapolis, Chicago, Denver, Minneapolis and Phoenix.

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