Turning the screws on Jack Abramoff

A Florida paper says another business partner is about to plead guilty and testify against the lobbyist.

By Tim Grieve

Published December 8, 2005 2:53PM (EST)

Is Jack Abramoff still breathing?

As we noted last week, the noose around the neck of the indicted GOP lobbyist tightened considerably when his lobbying partner pleaded guilty last month and agreed to cooperate with investigators looking into Abramoff's business dealings in Washington. Now the Florida Sun-Sentinel is reporting that Abramoff's partner in the purchase of a fleet of gambling boats is preparing to plead guilty and begin cooperating with investigators, too.

The paper says that Adam Kidan is expected to plead guilty next week to federal conspiracy and wire fraud charges for his role in the purchase of the SunCruz fleet from Gus Bolis, who was murdered in a Mafia-style hit allegedly planned and carried out by men with mob ties to whom Kidan had directed payments.

As part of his plea deal, the Sun-Sentinel says, Kidan will agree to testify against Abramoff. If that comes to pass, Abramoff could find himself at the receiving end of damaging testimony from one-time partners in two major federal criminal cases at once -- the SunCruz case, in which he's already been charged, and the Washington lobbying case, in which he is so far the unindicted co-conspirator known as "Lobbyist A."

That's bad news for Abramoff and worse news still for certain members of Congress, who may soon be learning a lesson about how stuck pigs squeal.

Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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