Politics & Government

Kott, Kohring, jailed in Alaska corruption scandal, may be released

A federal judge in Anchorage on Wednesday ordered the U.S. Marshals Service to bring former Alaska Reps. Pete Kott and Vic Kohring from prison into his court "as soon as reasonably possible" to set their release pending further hearings.

U.S. District Judge John Sedwick filed his orders shortly after the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco sent the corruption cases back to his court with directives that both men be released from prison. The three-judge appeals panel left it to Sedwick to determine conditions of release, though they noted that prosecutors had recommended the men be set free without bond. In a pair of one-paragraph orders, Sedwick said he would schedule hearings for both men as soon as the Marshals Service told him when Kott and Kohring would be in Anchorage. An official for the Marshals Service in Anchorage said she hadn't seen a copy of Sedwick's order yet and couldn't comment on the specific situation but said it sometimes takes weeks to arrange transportation for a prisoner from the Lower 48 to Anchorage.

Kott is serving a six-year sentence at the federal correctional institution in Sheridan, Ore. Kohring is doing 3 1/2 years in Taft, Calif.

Late Wednesday afternoon, Kott's trial attorney, Jim Wendt, asked Sedwick to clarify whether he wanted a marshal to escort Kott back to Alaska. He said Kott would prefer to be released in Oregon and given a ticket for a flight back to Alaska.

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