Former Tennessee Speaker Casada arrested in corruption probe

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (AP) — Tennessee’s former House Speaker Glen Casada and his top aide were arrested Tuesday on federal charges including bribery, kickbacks and conspiracy to commit money laundering involving federal funds.

FILE-Rep. Glen Casada, R-Franklin, top center, is sworn in with other members on the first day of the legislative session Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Their indictments come months after a Republican legislator, Rep. Robin Smith, abruptly resigned while facing federal wire charges that involved Casada. Casada was not directly named in those court documents, but her March indictment kicked off speculation that more charges would come from the corruption investigation.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Casada and former Chief of Staff Cade Cothren face a 20-count indictment. FBI agents arrested both at their homes Tuesday morning.

The charging document alleges Casada and Cothren exploited their positions of power by working with another unnamed lawmaker to funnel money to themselves using a political consulting firm that concealed their involvement.

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