Bill Allen's attorneys are seeking a wrist-slap for their client. They argue that he deserves no more than six months in prison, claiming his crimes were an aberration in a law-abiding life full of kindness and charity. Did they make that argument with a straight face?
We don't doubt Bill Allen is capable of kindness and charity. So was Al Capone.
But to say that his corruption of Alaska's politics was an aberration is, to put it kindly, utter nonsense.
Corruption was Allen's standard operating procedure, a way of doing business in Alaska's capital and elsewhere. It was the deliberate method by which he got what he wanted for his company in particular and his oil industry clients in general.
Allen and his company, Veco, are not first-time law-breakers. He first ran afoul of Alaska campaign law in the mid-80s, when the Alaska Public Offices Commission fined Veco more than $70,000 for illegal campaign contributions. (APOC and Veco later settled for $28,000.)
In 1991, APOC again fined Veco, this time more than $6,000, for illegal contributions to the lieutenant governor campaign of Steve McAlpine.
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