ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The winner of the Kentucky Derby is owned by the son of a key figure in the corruption trial of former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska.
The 50-1 shot, Mine That Bird, was one of the horses bought by the son of former Veco boss Bill Allen in a buying spree of Thoroughbreds using the money the family got from the sale of Veco.
Mark Allen's Double Eagle Ranch of Roswell, N.M., has a number of racehorses, including a stud once partly owned by Stevens, So Long Birdie. Mark Allen and a business partner in New Mexico bought Mine That Bird for $400,000 last year.
Bill Allen is the central figure in Alaska's political corruption scandal. He pleaded guilty two years ago Monday to bribing Alaska politicians, but in a plea deal, he won immunity for Mark and other members of his family. Bill Allen, still a witness in possible future cases, has not been sentenced.
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On the witness stand in Stevens's trial last year, Bill Allen explained what Mark had done: He had paid off a legislator. Allen didn't name the legislator, but when former Alaska state Rep. Bev Masek pleaded guilty to conspiracy in March, she admitted accepting "several thousand dollars" from a relative of Bill Allen as a bribe for spiking a bill that would raise oil taxes.
A felony conviction would have prevented Mark Allen from getting a license to own racehorses.
When Allen and his three children sold Veco to the international engineering company CH2M Hill in 2007, Mark Allen pocketed about $30 million, about the same as his two sisters, according to sales documents.