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HomeNewsArchivesJOHN TUTEIN INDICTED BY FEDERAL GRAND JURY

JOHN TUTEIN INDICTED BY FEDERAL GRAND JURY

Following his Aug. 13 arrest on bribery charges, former V.I. Sen. John Tutein was indicted on nine federal and territorial offenses by a federal grand jury Tuesday on St. Thomas.
Tutein, 41, faces charges of bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds and the territorial offenses of bribery of public officials and inducement to conflict of interest. Tutein, a vice president in St. Croix businessman Jeffrey Prosser’s Innovative Communication Corp., is charged with two counts each of the territorial offenses.
According to U.S. Attorney James Hurd, the indictment alleges that from on or about October 1998 through Feb. 5, 1999, Tutein offered to give Sen. Allie-Allison Petrus and other individuals cash, a van and a mobile TV broadcast van worth a combined $177,000. The offer was allegedly made in connection to a series of transactions of the V.I. government.
During Senate deliberations on the ICC-V.I. government land swap on May 21, Petrus accused Tutein of offering him an envelope full of $100 bills last October in exchange for support on an upcoming issue. Tutein denied the accusations.
The ICC-government land transaction would have involved Prosser’s company purchasing almost 2,000 acres of land on St. Croix’s northwest shore for approximately $30 million. Prosser would have turned over to the V.I. government 1,000 acres of improved, subdivided land, which would have been given to government workers in lieu of some $200 million they are owed in retroactive wages.
He would have also given nearly $10 million for public projects to be built on all of the territory’s islands.
In return, Prosser would have received full tax breaks for 10 of his companies for 30 years, valued between $6 million and $3.5 billion.
The controversial proposal was considered by Gov. Charles Turnbull, then pulled by Prosser after intense criticism in the community. The deal, however, was revived and approved 8-7 in the Senate, during which Petrus made his accusations, but was eventually vetoed by Turnbull.
The maximum penalty for bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The territorial offense of bribing public officials is five years and a $1,000 fine. The maximum penalty for inducement of conflict of interest is five years and a $5,000 fine.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office has jurisdiction because the V.I. government receives more than $10,000 in federal funds annually.
Tutein will be in court next on Sept. 1 for his arraignment on the grand jury indictment.

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Following his Aug. 13 arrest on bribery charges, former V.I. Sen. John Tutein was indicted on nine federal and territorial offenses by a federal grand jury Tuesday on St. Thomas.
Tutein, 41, faces charges of bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds and the territorial offenses of bribery of public officials and inducement to conflict of interest. Tutein, a vice president in St. Croix businessman Jeffrey Prosser’s Innovative Communication Corp., is charged with two counts each of the territorial offenses.
According to U.S. Attorney James Hurd, the indictment alleges that from on or about October 1998 through Feb. 5, 1999, Tutein offered to give Sen. Allie-Allison Petrus and other individuals cash, a van and a mobile TV broadcast van worth a combined $177,000. The offer was allegedly made in connection to a series of transactions of the V.I. government.
During Senate deliberations on the ICC-V.I. government land swap on May 21, Petrus accused Tutein of offering him an envelope full of $100 bills last October in exchange for support on an upcoming issue. Tutein denied the accusations.
The ICC-government land transaction would have involved Prosser’s company purchasing almost 2,000 acres of land on St. Croix’s northwest shore for approximately $30 million. Prosser would have turned over to the V.I. government 1,000 acres of improved, subdivided land, which would have been given to government workers in lieu of some $200 million they are owed in retroactive wages.
He would have also given nearly $10 million for public projects to be built on all of the territory’s islands.
In return, Prosser would have received full tax breaks for 10 of his companies for 30 years, valued between $6 million and $3.5 billion.
The controversial proposal was considered by Gov. Charles Turnbull, then pulled by Prosser after intense criticism in the community. The deal, however, was revived and approved 8-7 in the Senate, during which Petrus made his accusations, but was eventually vetoed by Turnbull.
The maximum penalty for bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The territorial offense of bribing public officials is five years and a $1,000 fine. The maximum penalty for inducement of conflict of interest is five years and a $5,000 fine.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office has jurisdiction because the V.I. government receives more than $10,000 in federal funds annually.
Tutein will be in court next on Sept. 1 for his arraignment on the grand jury indictment.