The public corruption trial in Virginia has made headlines across the US, with stories of expensive gifts, a failing marriage and a crush. Former governor, Bob McDonnell, and his wife, Maureen, are charged with accepting some $165,000 in gifts and loans from a wealthy businessman in exchange for promoting his company’s products.It’s the first time a Virginia governor has faced trial on public corruption charges.
The McDonnells are charged with accepting numerous gifts and loans from businessman Jonnie Williams. Defense lawyers said Maureen McDonnell developed a “crush” on Williams and reject the prosecution’s claim the McDonnells used the governor’s office to promote the businessman’s dietary supplement company.If convicted, McDonnell and his wife face decades in prison.
A juror was dismissed on day 12 of the trial. U.S. District Judge James Spencer gave no explanation for why, but at the end of the day he lectured the jury about not talking to anyone about the case or viewing any news stories about it.