Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) has been arrested and is in federal custody, a source familiar with the matter confirmed to TiffinOhio.net.
Householder, along with lobbyists Neil Clark, former Ohio GOP Chair Matt Borges, and Juan Cespedes, were taken into custody Tuesday morning on charges relating to a $60 million bribery scheme. Householder’s political adviser, Jeffrey Longstreth, was also taken into custody.
The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, David DeVillers, said his office and the FBI will be holding a press conference to announce the charges Tuesday afternoon at 2:30 p.m.
The press conference is said to involve a “public corruption racketeering conspiracy” involving state officials and associates.
A source told TiffinOhio.net the arrests are connected to House Bill 6, the FirstEnergy nuclear bailout bill that was passed by the legislature and signed last year by Gov. Mike DeWine (R).
Householder could not be reached for comment.
Evan Machan, a spokesperson for the Ohio Republican Party, declined to comment until after the U.S. Attorney’s press conference.
Householder is the state representative for Ohio’s 72nd House District and is the two-time and current Speaker of the Ohio House. His district includes Coshocton and Perry counties, as well as about half of Licking County. Householder previously served the same district from 1997 to 2004, including as Speaker from 2001 to 2004. Householder was elected to return to the Statehouse in 2016 and selected to serve again as Speaker on January 7, 2019.