Tierney addresses gambling operation allegations
SALEM, Mass. (WHDH) -- In the race for Sixth District congressional seat, Congressman John Tierney is trying to set the record straight. On Tuesday, he addressed accusations that he knew about an illegal gambling operation.
Tierney scheduled a Tuesday afternoon news conference in which he addressed allegations about a family fight. Last week, Tierney’s brother-in-law said the congressman knew all about the illegal gambling operation that led to his wife's conviction in 2010.
“I am telling the truth. I have always told the truth and there’s no record in the past of my not telling the truth. And I think that’s why people believe me who choose to believe me,” said Rep. John Tierney.
Rep. Tierney cleared the air about his wife Patrice’s guilty plea to helping her brothers run an illegal off-shore gambling operation. Tierney said neither he, nor Patrice knew the money Patrice’s brothers were sending her to take care of their families was dirty.
“People that know us well and know us to be honest and have integrity and know how hard we work to serve this constituency -- I regret that they have to watch all this but mostly I regret what it’s done to my wife,” said Tierney.
Tierney’s wife served a 30-day sentence. One of her brothers has surrendered, and claims the congressman knew everything.
“I wasn’t being vindictive. I just told the truth,” Tierney’s brother-in-law said.
Tierney’s other brother-in-law remains a fugitive.
Tierney said they’re lashing out because he, as a congressman, wouldn’t make the case disappear. Tierney also said his opponent is using the high-profile case to take cheap, political shots.
Congressional hopeful Richard Tisei said Tierney should have come clean two years ago.
“In politics and in government, all you have is your word and your integrity. And I do think that this whole situation has really damaged him,” said Tisei.
“If you’re supposed to believe [Tierney] and do his job and he lets this go by, how can you believe anything he does?” one man said.
Tierney said he did know his brothers-in-law had gambling issues in the past, but thought at least one of them had started a legitimate business in Antigua.