The Latest: Witness: Hubbard was often told of ethics limits

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Posted: May 31, 2016 1:46 PM
The Latest: Witness: Hubbard was often told of ethics limits

OPELIKA, Ala. (AP) — The Latest on the ethics trial of Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard (all times local):

12:45 p.m.

The retired director of the Alabama Ethics Commission said Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard was repeatedly cautioned that he could not use his office to financially benefit himself or his business clients.

Jim Sumner testified Tuesday in Hubbard's trial on 23 counts of ethics violations. He faces up to 20 years in prison for each count and immediate removal from office if convicted.

Sumner said Hubbard often sought advice about his work for private companies. He said he and general counsel Hugh Evans told Hubbard the arrangements were OK as long as he didn't use his office to benefit himself or his clients financially.

Sumner said they gave the advice so frequently that they called it "the drill."

Prosecutors have accused Hubbard of using his positions as house speaker and state Republican Party chairman to make money and solicit financial favors. Hubbard has maintained his innocence.

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4:17 a.m.

Testimony is set to resume in the ethics trial of Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard after the long holiday weekend.

Prosecutors have indicated that on Tuesday they will call a number of influential lobbyists and company owners as witnesses. Prosecutors say Hubbard asked them to make investments in his printing company or help him find business clients.

Hubbard is accused of using his position as GOP chairman and house speaker to generate $2.3 million in work and investments for his companies. Defense lawyers argue the transactions were legal and involved legitimate work.

Business Council of Alabama President Billy Canary, the daughter of former Gov. Bob Riley and others are expected to testify.

The trial is expected to last three weeks.