Former Senator Ford Indicted On More Charges - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

NewsChannel 5 Investigates:

Former Senator Ford Indicted On More Charges

NASHVILLE - In a six count indictment issued Monday, the U.S. Attorney alleges former state Sen. John Ford secretly took money to influence high-dollar deals in TennCare.

The indictment claims Ford secretly collected more than $800,000 as a consultant landing lucrative contracts for his clients.

Ford was already charged with taking bribes in Operation Tennessee Waltz. He is now awaiting trial.

"The people of Tennessee have a right to expect honest services from their public officials," U.S. Attorney Craig Morford said.

The indictments come in the wake of an exclusive NewsChannel 5 investigation. (See NewsChannel 5 Investigates: Capitol Hill Corruption.)

NewsChannel 5 first reported Ford received thousand of dollars as a consultant for OmniCare and Doral Dental, contractors for TennCare, when he was chairman of the powerful senate committee handling TennCare legislation.

Investigations found notes inside Ford's desk on the senate floor from lobbyists urging him to pass favorable legislation.

"Sen. Ford sought to assist Omnicare in a variety of ways, including asking Tennesse public officials to assist in having TennCare enrollees assigned to OmniCare," Morford said.

He kept it a secret and prosecutors said it was an illegal conflict of interest.

"As a public servant, Ford had a duty to provide honest services to the people of Tennessee. The facts that are alleged in this indictment show an appalling willingness to violate that duty," Morford said.

There is currently a warrant for Ford's arrest in Memphis. Once he turns himself in, he'll be brought to Nashville to go before a federal judge.

U.S. Attorney Craig Morford said the investigation is not closed. He's not ruling out the possibility of more indictments.

Ford could face a maximum penalty of 120 years in prison and $1.5 million in fines, if convicted.

Back to NewsChannel 5 Investigates: Capitol Hill Corruption
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