Another day, another guilty plea in the Abramoff saga.
This time it's Ann Copland, the former longtime aide to Mississippi GOP senator Thad Cochran, who was indicted recently on charges that she accepted gifts from Team Abramoff including tickets for concerts and sports events. In exchange, Copland used her position to help Abramoff's clients, the Mississippi Choctaw Indians.
The plea was announced in a Department of Justice press release.
Todd Boulanger, the Abramoff crony who has already pleaded guilty in connection with the wide-ranging scam, once sent an email to Abramoff arguing that Copland should be kept happy because, ''she's more valuable to us than a rank-and-file House member.''
Emails suggest Copland was particularly demanding
in seeking favors from Abramoff's crew.
Copland worked for Cochran for 29 years, before abruptly quitting last spring, as her name began to surface in connection with Abramoff.
Today's plea deal, which presumably involves a pledge to cooperate with the ongoing prove, will likely increase speculation that Cochran, who has not been charged with anything, could be in prosecutors' crosshairs.