Former Ohio house speaker pleads not guilty to alleged bribery scheme

Former Ohio house speaker pleads not guilty to alleged bribery scheme
The former speaker of the Ohio House, Republican Rep. Larry Householder, has pleaded not guilty to a federal corruption charge stemming from an alleged bribery scheme. (Source: OhioHouse.gov)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP/FOX19) - The former speaker of the Ohio House has pleaded not guilty to a federal corruption charge stemming from an alleged bribery scheme.

Republican Rep. Larry Householder and four others are accused of shepherding $60 million in energy company money for personal and political use in exchange for passing a legislative bailout of two aging nuclear plants.

Householder entered the not guilty plea during a brief hearing Thursday before a federal magistrate judge.

The former speaker said Wednesday in his first public comments that he is innocent and expects to be exonerated.

He’s represented by two Cleveland attorneys.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. FOX19 contributed to this report.