By Kim Palmer
CLEVELAND (Reuters) - Former U.S. Representative Mike Oxley, a 12-term Republican congressman from Ohio who co-sponsored the landmark Sarbanes-Oxley Act, died on Friday at the age of 71, officials said.
"Mike personified a true public servant who loved serving his constituents, Ohio, and the United States of America," Oxley's successor in Congress, Representative Bob Latta, said in a statement.
Oxley died while asleep at his home in McLean, Virginia, according to the Courier newspaper in Findlay, Ohio.
He retired from Congress in 2007 after a 25-year career representing Ohio's Fourth Congressional District, including several years as chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.
He is best known for his role in the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, which was passed by Congress to guard against corporate fraud of the sort committed by companies including Enron Corp and WorldCom Inc.
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said Oxley had been a national leader in reforming banking and finance laws. "And, in what can sometimes be a tough business, Mike Oxley was genuinely liked by people on both sides of the aisle," DeWine said in a statement.
Ohio Governor John Kasich said he had lost a great friend and mentor. "There will always be a special place in my heart for him," Kasich said. "He dedicated his career to making our state and nation stronger."
After leaving Congress, Oxley had joined the BakerHostetler
law firm in Washington D.C., the firm said in a statement at the time.
(Reporting by Kim Palmer in Cleveland; Writing by Daniel Wallis; Editing by Tom Brown)