Corruption Trial Continues

Aug 1, 2014

Day five of the corruption trial of former Governor Bob McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, kicked off with the former first lady’s attorney cross-examining the prosecution's key witness, ex-Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams. 

The strategy seemed to include attributing most business dealings associated with the first family to Maureen and away from her husband.

The more Mrs. McDonnell, who was not a state official, is tied to the gifts and loans, the more leverage the defense has to say that the former Governor did not use his office in exchange for gifts.

Maureen's attorney focused on the former first lady’s ex-Chief of Staff, Mary Shea Sutherland, who not only traveled with her on trips sponsored by Williams and Star but also received favors from Williams. This as she sought a new job from him and said she was unhappy in her position.

To debunk Williams' claims that his relationship with the couple was mostly business, the defense pointed out that within a roughly two-year period, there were at least 1,200 texts, e-mails, and phone calls between Maureen and Williams—some in the early morning hours. Williams admitted that he communicated with the Governor far less and was much closer to Maureen.

He said he was trying to get her to market his products and said she never discussed her personal relationship with him.

Her attorney wrapped up by reading an e-mail that Maureen sent to Williams when Virginia was rocked by an earthquake. It read, "I just felt the earth move and I wasn't having sex."