Tim Longmeyer, former deputy AG and Personnel Cabinet secretary, will face state charges in kickback scheme, Beshear says

05/04/2016 06:47 PM

FRANKFORT – Attorney General Andy Beshear will file charges against Tim Longmeyer, his former top deputy and Personnel Cabinet secretary under Gov. Steve Beshear who pleaded guilty to federal bribery charges last month.

Andy Beshear announced the impending charges in Franklin Circuit Court on Wednesday, saying those will come before Longmeyer’s Aug. 18 sentencing in federal court. He faces up to 10 years in prison for his role in the kickback scheme, in which he pleaded guilty to helping steer work related to the Kentucky Employees’ Health Plan to Lexington-based firm MC Squared Consulting in exchange for nearly $200,000 in cash and $6,000 in illegal conduit contributions to political campaigns.

“Last week my office started gathering information to prepare to charge Tim Longmeyer with state crimes,” Beshear said. “There’s no question that the crimes that he has plead guilty to on the federal level mean that he has broken state law.”

Brian Butler, Longmeyer’s Louisville attorney, did not return a call seeking comment.

Beshear’s move comes on the heels of a report Tuesday by the Lexington Herald-Leader, which obtained previously sealed court records in Longmeyer’s case.

The records shed additional light on the scope of the investigation, specifically naming MC Squared Consulting co-founder Sam McIntosh and one of his employees, Myron Harrod, as subjects of search warrants.

The documents also name Beshear and former Attorney General Jack Conway, last year’s Democratic gubernatorial nominee, as recipients of the illegal campaign contributions, although a Federal Bureau of Investigation agent wrote that he did not believe Beshear or Conway were aware of the illicit donations.

The Herald-Leader further reported that the newly released records show that Beshear’s campaign paid MC Squared Consulting for voter outreach work, but the recipient of those dollars was disguised. Longmeyer had also prepared to continue funneling work to the firm at the Office of the Attorney General for jury studies, according to the newspaper.

Beshear said he’s unsure whether the attorney general’s office has ever paid for jury studies “but we certainly didn’t engage in any type of transaction like that since Jan. 4,” and he acknowledged paying for voter outreach services in Jefferson County during his campaign.

“How and where that money went and was used, I now have concerns that they didn’t do anything with it at all,” he told reporters. “I now have concerns that we didn’t get the services rendered, and I think that’s as big of an issue because, again, that would be stealing.”

Beshear said his office would wait for federal authorities to deal with MC Squared employees before pursuing an investigation of its own, adding that he will be “very interested” in any action by prosecutors on that front when asked whether he would investigate employees of the firm. No others have been charged in the matter.

An informant at MC Squared Consulting also accused McIntosh and Harrod of involvement in a marijuana trafficking operation with a California supplier, according to the Herald-Leader report.

Beshear said he would not recuse himself the prosecution, which prompted the Republican Party of Kentucky to question that decision.

“How can Kentuckians be expected to trust Andy Beshear to conduct an unbiased and impartial investigation into accusations so intimately linked to close political allies, his father’s administration and his own campaign and official office?” Tres Watson asked in a statement. “His insistence on personally handling this case should raise more than a few eyebrows.”

Beshear complimented federal investigators for their efforts in the case, which had the potential to inflict “real damage to the attorney general’s office.”

“Both I and the commonwealth are and should be very grateful to the U.S. attorney and to the FBI,” he said. “Without them, a person who had a reputation for honesty and integrity would not have been exposed as a criminal.”

Beshear said he plans to donate contributions linked to the FBI investigation to Common Cause of Kentucky.

Kevin Wheatley

Kevin Wheatley is a reporter for Pure Politics. He joined cn|2 in September 2014 after five years at The State Journal in Frankfort, where he covered Kentucky government and politics. You can reach him at kevin.wheatley@charter.com or 502-792-1135 and follow him on Twitter at @KWheatley_cn2.

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