WASHINGTON – A lobbyist from Anchorage, Alaska, has pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiring to obtain bribe payments for a former elected member of the Alaska House of Representatives, Assistant Attorney General Alice S. Fisher of the Criminal Division announced today.
William B. Bobrick pleaded guilty to a one-count criminal information today before Chief U.S. District Judge John W. Sedwick at the federal court in Anchorage.
Bobrick admitted that beginning in July 2004 and continuing until March 2005, he conspired with Thomas T. Anderson, a former member of the Alaska House of Representatives, to solicit and receive $24,000 in payments from an FBI confidential source. Bobrick admitted that he and Anderson agreed to accept the $24,000 in payments in exchange for Anderson’s agreement to take official acts as a member of the Alaska state Legislature to further certain business projects, including securing positions on specific legislative committees and subcommittees, voting for legislation, and lobbying other state legislators to support the same legislation. In one conversation with the FBI confidential source, Bobrick represented that in exchange for the $24,000, Anderson would “[b]e our boy in Juneau.”
Bobrick also admitted that, in order to conceal the payments, he and Anderson conspired to use a company created by Bobrick – Pacific Publications – as a conduit for the payments from the FBI confidential source. During the course of the scheme, Bobrick received three separate payments of $8,000. Bobrick deposited those checks into a Pacific Publications bank account, and then provided Anderson with checks drawn on the Pacific Publications account. Bobrick admitted that the purpose of the company was in part to keep Anderson from having to list the FBI confidential source as a source of income on Anderson’s financial disclosure forms with the Alaska Public Offices Commission.
Bobrick faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine for conspiracy to commit extortion under color of official right, bribery, and money laundering.
A seven-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Anchorage in December 2006 charged Anderson with extortion, conspiracy, bribery and money laundering. An indictment is merely an accusation and defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty at trial beyond a reasonable doubt. This case is being prosecuted by trial attorneys Nicholas A. Marsh and Edward P. Sullivan of the Public Integrity Section, which is headed by Chief William M. Welch II, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joseph W. Bottini and James A. Goeke from the District of Alaska. The case is being investigated by special agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.