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Your Digital Source for Zanesville News

Y-City News

Your Digital Source for Zanesville News

Y-City News

House Bill 6 investigation continues with likely more forthcoming indictments

Ohio Channel

Another public official has been indicted in the House Bill 6 scandal in which former local representative Larry Householder was a key player.

While each arrest and prosecution has been intriguing in its own right, the public comments made this go-around by a top federal official in the Southern District of Ohio, among a parallel investigation out of the nation’s capital, shows the downwind prosecutions have likely only just begun.

Y-City News has been investigating the former United States Attorney David DeVillers, the top-ranking federal official who brought down Householder, for corruption of his own, including an alleged payoff agreement with local officials, helping them escape federal prosecution. That and other actions while leading the U.S. Attorney’s Office have come under increased scrutiny by at least one other federal district and the top brass out of the District of Columbia, among concerns surrounding a Chinese intelligence operation.

When Larry Householder was arrested at his farm in rural Perry County, many were shocked, however, it wasn’t because he was taken away by law enforcement but because federal authorities finally made their move.

From his early days as a county commissioner to his first stint at the Statehouse, many locals have recalled a man who was fraught with controversy and well-known for being corrupt, but also loyal to his constituents.

It was likely that balancing act that kept him out of trouble for so long. Householder, after the Ohio Supreme Court ruled in DeRolph v. State that the way schools were funded in Ohio was not constitutional, worked to get the poorest kids in the state new school buildings, something he knew about all too well was needed as the lawsuit originated out of his home county.

In 2001, Householder was elected to the highest position among his colleagues, Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives, where he would serve for two terms. He would leave in 2004 due to term limits but not before he was investigated for alleged money laundering.

He returned to Perry County, becoming the county auditor, an elected position, where he got cited repeatedly for issues within the office during audits, including dishing out vacation time that wasn’t yet earned.

When he returned the second time to the Statehouse, with eyes once again at becoming Speaker, he entangled himself with First Energy, taking bridges to provide subsidies for its two struggling nuclear power plants.

It was that final act that landed Householder, now 64 years old, a 20-year stent in federal prison, possibly the remainder of his life behind bars, after taking his case to trial.

We received numerous tips that Householder was in the process of making a deal with federal prosecutors in exchange for information on other corrupt officials in the region but at trial, the parties were adamant that no negotiations took place.

That information would have been especially valuable to federal investigators as they work to protect sensitive and classified sites from the Chinese who have been working to gain intelligence on local officials, netting them details on existing and forthcoming projects in the region.

Householder was convicted at trial in early March, sentenced in June and sent away in August. Many thought after the long delay that federal prosecutors were done with the case, that was until recently when former PUCO Chairman Sam Randazzo self-surrendered in Cincinnati on a federal indictment dated November 29.

What many outlets didn’t catch, however, was a unique set of words chosen by FBI’s Cincinnati Special Agent in Charge J. William Rivers, who has jurisdiction over the entire Southern District of Ohio, 48 counties in total.

“The FBI will remain vigilant in investigating allegations of corruption at all levels of government and hold those who violate the law accountable for their actions,” Rivers commented for the media release.

When Householder was arrested, for example, then FBI’s Cincinnati Special Agent in Charge Chris Hoffman used a different set choice of words.

“All forms of public corruption are unacceptable,” stated Hoffman. “When the corruption is alleged to reach some of the highest levels of our state government, the citizens of Ohio should be shocked and appalled.”

While it’s not publically known if local FBI agents know, the House Bill 6 Scandal is also being investigated by another federal district, outside Ohio, and by the top brass out of the District of Columbia, the nation’s capital.

Y-City News has previously identified that former Senate-confirmed United States Attorney David DeVillers, the top federal prosecutor who indicted Householder and others he was connected to, has been involved in his own alleged corruption.

While serving in that prestigious role, DeVillers is alleged to have not brought criminal charges against local officials in Muskingum County and then received tens of thousands of dollars for acting as a private-practicing special prosecutor in cases outside his scope and expertise in the same county.

Many individuals have reached out to our organization about Householder’s ties to Zanesville and Muskingum County officials, many petrified about what would happen to them or members of their family if they spoke on the record.

We have also discovered that DeVillers spent little time on a case involving the sexual exploitation of elementary-aged children, while acting as a special prosecutor in Muskingum County, joining forces months after with the defense attorney he went up against, before Chief Judge Algenon Marbley, defending a prominent doctor in federal court. Likewise, he worked a highly confidential investigation on behalf of the Ohio Attorney General’s Office with a 26-year-old defense attorney he went up against months after a local drug case that was shielded in secrecy.

However, it was DeViller’s very involvement in the immediate region, after leaving federal service, that became the interest of foreign intelligence services that caused the most concern, which involved those at the highest, most secretive levels, of the American government to protect sensitive sites and operations.

Y-City News has learned that the matter involving the other federal district, concerning the House Bill 6 Scandal, involves DeVillers and Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost. To protect that investigation, which is centered on financial crimes, we are not providing more details or context.

While federal prosecutors out of Ohio would need the approval of their bosses within the Department of Justice to go after a statewide elected official, such as Lt. Governor Jon Husted, the extent of the parallel federal investigation out of D.C. is not publically known.

One of the most concerning allegations that Y-City News is investigating is that information provided to local FBI agents about corruption in Muskingum County improperly made its way back to those very officials, a fact that if true could have a chilling effect on citizens’ willingness to confidentially share information with agents, a necessary part of the process at combating corruption and keeping the country safe from foreign adversaries.

Y-City News continues to investigate. Do you have additional information about this situation, other information you think our news organizing should know about or want to bring our attention to a matter that needs investigating? We would like to hear from you. Contact us at (740) 562-6252, email us at or mail us at PO Box 686, Zanesville, Ohio 43701. All sources are kept strictly confidential.

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