GOP donor Odom indicted on federal campaign finance chargesby George Bennett | January 22nd, 2013
Republican donor Jay Odom, a Panhandle developer who was a key figure in the downfall of former Florida House Speaker Ray Sansom, has been indicted on charges of violating federal campaign finance laws.
The federal indictment unsealed today alleges that Odom, 56, evaded campaign finance limits by using more than $10,000 in personal money to reimburse donors who contributed to a presidential candidate in 2007. A release from the Department of Justice doesn’t name the candidate. Odom contributed to Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee in 2007.
Odom and Sansom were co-defendants in a corruption case before charges were dropped in 2011. Prosecutors accused Sansom of putting $6 million into the state budget to build an airport hangar for Odom. But attorneys for Sansom and Odom said the $6 million was for a new hurricane-proof emergency operations center for the city of Destin.
While the charges were ultimately dropped, the matter led Sansom to resign as speaker in 2009.