Judge Won't Dismiss Hubbard Ethics Case
A judge has refused to dismiss ethics charges against House Speaker Mike Hubbard. Lee County Circuit Judge Jacob Walker on Tuesday rejected Hubbard's request to dismiss the case for allegations of prosecutor misconduct. Walker, in a separate order, said lawyers should be ready to go to trial in mid-May. Walker's decision perhaps ended the Republican speaker's hopes of getting the case dismissed before trial. The defense accused prosecutor Matt Hart of wrongly sharing information with a political operative. Walker wrote that it appeared Hart was investigating leaks, rather than "leaking" material. Hubbard faces felony ethics charges accusing him of using his public position to benefit his businesses and clients. He has maintained his innocence and said the transactions were legal. Walker scheduled a pretrial hearing for April 15.