Attorney General Alan Wilson Issues Statement on Speaker Harrell
(Columbia, SC – October 9, 2012) South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson issued the following statement in response to media inquiries regarding the use of campaign funds by House Speaker Bobby Harrell.
“As the state’s chief prosecutor, this Office resolves matters in the public’s best interest. There is an established record of our following the legal process. It must be given the chance to proceed as designed by law. That is what we will do in this instance.
“South Carolina statute 8-13-540(3) authorizes the House Ethics committee to investigate this type of allegation concerning House members. That law says ‘[a]fter the hearing, the ethics committee shall determine its findings of fact… (d) in the case of an alleged criminal violation, [it shall] refer the matter to the Attorney General for investigation.’
“For that reason it is premature for this Office to ask SLED to investigate this matter at this time. The process must proceed as prescribed by state law. Should the House Ethics Committee not act, this Office is then prepared to do what is in the public’s best interest.”