Lawmakers, lobbyists appear before Ala grand jury

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - At least six legislators and three lobbyists have appeared at the federal courthouse in Montgomery to testify before a grand jury investigating allegations of possible vote buying on a bill to legalize electronic bingo.

The legislators seen appearing Tuesday were all Republicans and included state Senators Tripp Pittman of Montrose, Ben Brooks of Mobile, Phil Poole of Tuscaloosa and Charles Bishop of Jasper. House members who testified included Jim Barton of Mobile and Mack Gipson of Prattville.

Pittman said federal prosecutors asked him questions about how the legislative process worked and if he'd been offered anything for his vote. He said nothing was offered.

At least three lobbyists and one media relations consultant also appeared before the grand jury, which is expected to hear more testimony Wednesday.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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