Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Political Scandal Erupts in Montana County, Including Talk of Crimes, Cover Up

Posted By on Wed, Jan 22, 2014 at 9:08 AM

Currently, New Jersey and Virginia top the list of states embroiled in political scandal.

But Montana comes in a close third.

The treasurer for Southwestern Montana's Ravalli County dropped a couple of bombshells Jan. 21, when she accused one county commissioner of corruption and a string of other county officials with illegally selling tax liens.

This morning's Missoulian reports that the allegations come from Valerie Stamey, who is wading through a bit of controversy herself: It was revealed last week that she faced a default judgement for cashing the same $18,149 check twice. Additionally, county officials have indicated that the state's attorney general's office may launch an investigation into Stamey's office, which has reportedly fallen months behind in preparing the county's financial records.

But on Jan. 21, Stamey deflected the heat, saying that there had been "an orchestrated and vile campaign to destroy my character." She also described her office as a "crime scene of past illegal activity."

Specifically, Stamey alleged that former county Treasurer Joanne Johnson had removed files to hide illegal sales of tax liens. She also called county commissioner J.R. Iman "corrupt," adding that Iman "threateed her when she first attempted to gain access to county accounts." Stamey said she planned on asking the FBI to investigate her allegations.

Meanwhile, Ravalli County commissioners have informed Stamey that they have scheduled a meeting for Thursday, Jan. 23, to discuss matters, but Stamey said she would neither attend the meeting nor answer commissioners' questions in writing.

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