St. Louis Record

Monday, October 14, 2019

Former St. Louis county executive voluntarily disbarred after federal bribery, mail fraud guilty plea

Discipline

By Karen Kidd | May 29, 2019


JEFFERSON CITY (St. Louis Record) — Attorney and recently resigned St. Louis County Executive Steven V. Stenger has been voluntarily disbarred following a May 28 Missouri Supreme Court order and his guilty plea earlier this month to federal bribery and mail fraud charges.

The court handed down its brief order after Stenger filed a motion to voluntarily surrender his license to practice law in Missouri. The state high court's action also followed recommendations filed in the case by the office of chief disciplinary counsel.

The court also ordered Stenger to pay costs in the matter.


Former St. Louis County Executive Steven V. Stenger | Wikipedia - Searchds

Stenger was first elected county executive in January 2015, having previously served five years on the St. Louis County Council. He was re-elected to the county executive post in November.

On April 25, a federal grand jury indicted Stenger on bribery, mail fraud and other charges, based on a U.S. Department of Justice investigation. The indictment in U.S. District Court for Missouri's Eastern District, Eastern Division, alleged Stenger accepted bribes in return for allowing companies to enrich themselves "through corrupt means."

Allegations against Stenger including allegedly ensuring that John Rallo and his companies, Cardinal Insurance and Cardinal Creative Consulting, received St. Louis County contracts over a period of two years after Stenger received campaign donations and benefited from fundraising events.

Stenger also was alleged to have made sure Rallo and his company Wellston Holdings LLC received options on two properties in Wellston.

Stenger resigned as county executive four days after his indictment.

On May 3, Stenger pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge Catherine D. Perry to three counts of honest services bribery/mail fraud.

Stenger's swift fall should send a message, executive assistant U.S. attorney Reginald Harris said in a Department of Justice news release shortly after Stenger's plea.

"The events of this week, including the unsealing of the grand jury’s Indictment; the resignation of the defendant as St. Louis county executive; and … the defendant's guilty plea to all charges in the indictment, should send a message that the Department of Justice and federal law enforcement will not tolerate public corruption at any level of government," Harris said.

Stenger's sentencing hearing is scheduled Aug. 9.

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Missouri Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel Missouri Supreme Court U.S. Department of Justice U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri

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