Kentucky Man Pleads Guilty To Governor's Race Election Fraud

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - A Kentucky man pleaded guilty Friday to making illegal campaign contributions to candidates in last year's governor's race, including former Gov. Ernie Fletcher who was defeated in his re-election bid.

The case against Phillip Dufour, an employee of state road contractor Elmo Greer & Sons of London, was resolved by an agreement that required him to pay a $10,000 fine. In addition, Elmo Greer and Sons agreed to pay $250,000 to cover the cost of the investigation.

The agreement also requires the company to cooperate in further investigations by providing names of others who may have been involved, Attorney General Greg Stumbo said.

"Protecting our political process is essential to freedom," Stumbo said in a statement. "With this criminal plea and significant fine, we have fired a shot across the bow of all who seek to taint elections with illegal contributions."

Dufour entered his guilty plea to the felony charge in Franklin County Circuit Court. Dufour and his attorney didn't immediately return calls seeking comment.

Prosecutors alleged that between Sept. 18, 2006 and Aug. 27 2007, Dufour made improper payments to eight people who in turn made contributions to the Republican gubernatorial campaigns of Fletcher and former U.S. Rep. Anne Northup of Louisville and to the Democratic campaign of former Lt. Gov. Steve Henry of Louisville.

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