Congressman William Jefferson Testifies Today

Reported by: Associated Press

A Louisiana congressman charged with taking bribes to broker business deals in Africa is expected to testify today to dispute that he willingly spoke to FBI agents when his New Orleans home was raided.

Prosecutors in the case against Democrat William Jefferson want to introduce statements that Jefferson made to agents in August 2005. The agents confronted him with videotaped evidence that he had accepted a $100,000 bribe.

The agents say Jefferson was dejected and speculated about his political future.

Jefferson's defense lawyers argue that he should have been advised of his right to remain silent. FBI agents testified at a hearing yesterday in Alexandria that the interview was cordial and that Jefferson was free to leave at any time.