Former state Rep. Ty Cullen to plead guilty in federal corruption case

Hawaii News Now has learned the company at the center of the Legislative bribery scandal has political connections far beyond the two lawmakers accused.
Published: Feb. 9, 2022 at 11:15 AM HST|Updated: Feb. 9, 2022 at 5:43 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Former state Rep. Ty Cullen, who abruptly resigned on Tuesday after he was charged with accepting bribes, plans to plead guilty to the federal charges.

His attorney added the former lawmaker takes responsibility for his actions and is cooperating with federal investigators, who have also charged former Senate Majority Kalani English with taking thousands of dollars in bribes in exchange for legislative actions.

Prosecutors said Cullen took $40,000 from an “industrial services contractor” to introduce then kill a cesspool removal bill that would benefit the cleaning company.

Federal authorities said the largest bribe were allegedly made in 2014 during a gambling trip.

“They were both in New Orleans for a conference, at that time Person A provided Rep. Cullen with casino chips. When they were cashed out they were of value greater than $22,000,” said U.S. Attorney Clare Connors.

Cullen was charged with one count of honest services wire fraud, a felony publishable by up to 20 years behind bars.

His initial court appearance and change of plea is scheduled for Tuesday morning in federal court.

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