Wednesday, December 20, 2017

COMMENTARY -- They Fleeced Us And Got Away With It, Until Now - Donald V. Watkins (re Gov Robert Bentley and Rebekah Mason) 

They Fleeced Us And Got Away With It, Until Now
By Donald V. Watkins
©Copyrighted and Published (via Facebook) on December 20, 2017
They were the premier power couple in Alabama.
He was married to his college sweetheart. She was married to financially struggling weatherman at a small TV station in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
He was in his early 70s and feeling vibrant again. His excitement grew to the point where he began prescribing and ordering Viagra (in his wife's name) from an online pharmacy in Canada and having it shipped to the Governor's Mansion for his use.
She was in her late 30s and wanted to feel important in life. She allowed him to explore her body while she usurped his executive powers and used them for her personal economic benefit.
He was madly in love with her. She was madly in love with what he could do for her.
He was the governor of Alabama. She was the governor's senior political advisor and secret lover.
He needed her attention and affection. She indulged him – for a price.
He ditched his wife of 50 years in order to make himself available for her every wish. She stayed with her complicit husband, who was one of the governor's highly paid department heads.
In addition to his insatiable lust for the pleasures of her flesh and her uncontrollable urge to seize and exercise his executive powers, they shared one overriding vice that caused them to cling to each other tightly – their personal greed.
He devised creative ways to funnel private funds and public sector money to her under the radar of public scrutiny. He used taxpayers' money to enrich her. He used campaign donations to elevate her socio-economic standing in the political world. He used 501(c)(3) "dark money" to make her happy.
He even channeled taxpayers' money to her by using her husband's PR firm as the conduit and The University of Alabama as a money launderer. He was arrogant enough to make the University expedite its payments to this PR firm by sending the money via Pay Pal. The University dutifully complied with his wishes because he was the ex-officio President of the institution's board of trustees.
He cheated his wife out of her fair share of the marital estate during the divorce proceedings by hiding his portion of the money that he and his lover had pilfered from multiple sources. They stashed this loot in a safe deposit box at a Montgomery bank and in joint bank accounts they discreetly opened at other banks.
They were great schemers. Like sophisticated drug dealers, they used "burner" cell phones; they occasionally traveled from Montgomery to the same rendezvous locations in separate private planes; and they shuffled between their multiple love nests whenever they were in the mood for a sexual tryst.
They knew that former Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange could be neutralized as a potential law enforcement threat by simply appointing him to his dream job – the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Jeff Sessions. In turn, this allowed them to handpick Strange's successor. After a thoughtful search for the weakest prosecutor in Alabama, they settled on Steve Marshall as Strange's replacement.
When they had no way out of the web of deception they had spun in their "sex for power" scandal, they worked out a "sweetheart" deal with Steve Marshall for him to resign as governor and for her to gracefully leave the Capitol. He would serve no jail time. She would not be prosecuted. They were free to do their thing in private.
His name is Robert Julian Bentley. Her name is Rebekah Caldwell Mason.
The New Bombshell Development
What the public did not know when Governor Bentley pled guilty to misdemeanor ethics charges and resigned in disgrace is this bombshell development – Prosecutors allowed Robert Bentley and Rebekah Mason to keep the money they had stashed away in their jointly held bank accounts.
This money was made when Bentley had gubernatorial powers and used them to force people, businesses, and other entities to hire and pay Rebekah Mason as a "consultant". She, in turn, held Bentley's portion of the money in these joint accounts.
As a result of prosecutorial leniency, Robert Bentley and Rebekah Mason were left free to spend this tainted money as they saw fit. They have been doing so since Bentley left office in April.
One of the banks holding cash in a joint checking account in the name of Robert Bentley and Rebekah Mason is the Robertson Banking Company in Demopolis. It is one of the oldest banks in Alabama. Demopolis is the childhood home of Jonathan Mason, Rebekah's husband.
Bentley has used the Robertson bank account to transfer thousands of dollars to individuals and businesses in Alabama on multiple occasions. The signatories on this account share the same listed Tuscaloosa address.
After their exit from public life, Robert Bentley and Rebekah Mason found a slick way to continue enjoying the perks and tangible economic benefits of their long and largely successful crime spree. In the end, they fleeced Alabama taxpayers, campaign donors, "dark money" contributors, and a host of others whose money was misappropriated and misused to support their shameless, high-flying, romantic lifestyle.
What is worse, Attorney General Steve Marshall allowed Robert Bentley and Rebekah Mason to escape criminal justice for fleecing us in royal fashion.

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