Ex-state lawmaker Veon gets new trial in corruption case

HARRISBURG (AP) — A former high-ranking Democrat in the state House is being given a new trial on allegations he misused a nonprofit for his own benefit in a ruling that called the conviction a “criminalization of politics.”

The state Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a county judge erred when he told jurors hearing the case against former Rep. Mike Veon that Veon didn’t have to gain financially to be convicted of violating the conflict-of-interest law.

The court also says it was a mistake to order Veon to pay restitution to state government. Veon served five years after being convicted in that case and in a separate trial.

Veon lawyer Joel Sansone calls it “a total and complete vindication.” A spokesman for the state attorney general’s office says the decision is being reviewed.