Friday, February 22, 2013
Even before their corruption convictions, the careers and life stories of the Orie sisters of western Pennsylvania were extraordinary.
They came from a family of nine children who all grew up to be accomplished. Joan Orie Melvin became a state Supreme Court justice. Janine Orie was her loyal aide. A third sister became the state Senate majority whip.
Jane Orie was sentenced last year to up to 10 years for using her state-paid staff to run her campaigns. Joan Orie Melvin and Janine Orie were convicted this week in a spinoff of similarly misusing Melvin's former staff and the senator's.
The Republican Orie sisters have argued the prosecution is the result of a political vendetta by a Democratic prosecutor in Pittsburgh who has repeatedly denied ulterior motives.