The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
, in a one-sentence order issued last week, denied the request of Ted Suhl
to be released pending his appeal of a federal district court conviction of paying bribes to gain advantage in dealing with the state Department of Human Services.
Suhl operated outpatient and residential treatment programs for youth financed by Medicaid money administered by Human Services. He was sentenced in October t
o seven years in prison for conviction on four counts. His attorneys are arguing on appeal that Judge Billy Roy Wilson
made errors in rulings in the case. They are relying, too, on a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning the conviction of a former Virginia governor for taking gifts from a person with interest in government policy, absent a showing he'd taken an official act in return for the gifts.
Suhl has contended he made many gifts to charity and received nothing in return for money cited in this case. A former state representative and DHS official, Stephen Jones, is serving a prison sentence for taking money from Suhl, but in his testimony said he never "took an official" act as a result of his dealings with Suhl.
Suhl's attorneys had argued that his case for reversal was so strong that he should be released pending final decision. The refusal came the day after Suhl reported to a federal prison in Illinois. The briefing of the appeal continues.