FBI alleges bribes, extortion by ex-Ohio House speaker

FBI alleges bribes, extortion by ex-Ohio House speaker
FILE – In this June 28, 2016, file photo, Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger marks the passage of legislation to rename Port Columbus International Airport to John Glenn Columbus International Airport, during an event at the airport in Columbus, Ohio. Federal investigators seized records from Rosenberger's office in 2018 as part of a federal criminal investigation into potential bribes and kickbacks surrounding payday lending legislation, according to a subpoena and search warrant released Monday, Aug. 27, 2018, in response to public records requests. Rosenberger, a Republican rising star, resigned suddenly on April 12. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete, File)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Federal investigators seized records from former Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger’s office earlier this year as part of a federal criminal investigation into potential bribes and kickbacks surrounding payday lending legislation.

A subpoena and search warrant the House released Monday in response to public records requests provide new details of the FBI probe that led to the Republican rising star’s sudden resignation in April.

Documents show U.S. Attorney Benjamin Glassman sought three boxes and a thumb drive that investigators believe contain evidence of extortion, conspiracy to commit extortion, attempt to commit extortion and bribery.

Investigators also sought documentation of Rosenberger’s travels and communications with payday industry lobbyists Stephen Dimon Jr. and Leslie Gaines, and Carol Stewart, senior vice president of the payday lending company Advance America.

His attorney has said Rosenberger has nothing to hide.