Krolicki in limbo


The criminal case against Nevada Lt. Gov. Brian Krolicki has been pretty odd from the get-go.

Mr. Krolicki had been rising in Republican party ranks, advancing from state treasurer to lieutenant governor, with well publicized plans to challenge U.S. Sen. Harry Reid in 2010 ... when Democratic Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto decided to indict Mr. Krolicki on charges of mishandling state funds.

Ms. Cortez Masto's indictment, handed down a year ago, alleges Mr. Krolicki misappropriated and falsified accounts involving the Nevada College Savings Program.

There was no money found missing from the $3 billion fund. What that left was the question of whether Mr. Krolicki's handling of the program's $6 million marketing and advertising budget fell within his discretion, or whether it rose to the level of a criminal offense.

Now, it turns out the husband of Ms. Cortez Masto organized a recent fundraiser for one of Mr. Krolicki's political opponents.

At a court hearing in the case last week, Deputy Attorney General Christine Guerci-Nyhus said she understood it was difficult to believe Ms. Cortez Masto was unaware of her husband's political activities, but she assured the court that was the case. She said Ms. Cortez Masto would withdraw from the case if so requested.

But, "This offer is too little, too late," Richard Wright, an attorney for Mr. Krolicki, said at the beginning of an hour-long hearing to determine whether the case should be thrown out for lack of evidence -- a question Judge Valerie Adair has yet to resolve.

Mr. Wright said another delay in the case would effectively ruin Mr. Krolicki's election chances next year.

After the hearing, Mr. Wright reiterated that the case against Mr. Krolicki is a "partisan prosecution," arguing either the state or the court should dismiss the whole shebang.

Indeeed, at the very least Ms. Cortez Masto should stop merely "offering" to withdraw from the case. Further delays at this point will only amplify suspicions that this was a political prosecution from the start. Either the charges should be dismissed, or Mr. Krolicki deserves his day in court -- right away.

 

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