By Associated Press - Monday, March 10, 2014

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) - A federal appeals court has refused to order a new trial for a former defense contractor convicting of bribing California Congressman Randy “Duke” Cunningham.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals refused the request Monday from Brent Wilkes, agreeing with a lower court that what Wilkes’ attorney called new evidence that could exonerate him was available during his trial.

Wilkes was convicted in 2007 and sentenced to 12 years in prison for bribery and other charges for lavishing Cunningham with more than $700,000 in cash and gifts in exchange for nearly $90 million in defense contracts.

Cunningham, whose U.S. House career ended in disgrace when he was convicted of accepting $2.4 million in bribes, was sentenced to more than eight years in prison in 2006 and was released last year.

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