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N.J. Sen. Torricelli to Testify
Seattle Post-Intelligencer ^ | Friday, July 19, 2002 | THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Posted on 07/21/2002 11:39:05 PM PDT by Ready2go

WASHINGTON -- Sen. Robert Torricelli will testify under oath to the Senate ethics committee in its investigation of allegations he accepted gifts from a New Jersey businessman in return for official favors.

The closed-door appearance Monday will mark the first time the New Jersey Democrat will answer committee questions regarding allegations made by now-jailed businessman David Chang.

In January, the U.S. attorney's office in New York dropped its criminal investigation of Torricelli's finances, his fund-raising practices and his relationship with Chang, and referred the matter to the Senate ethics panel.

Torricelli, up for re-election in November, denies the allegations.

Torricelli said in a prepared statement he is "fully cooperating and expects it to result in a successful conclusion."

Sources familiar with the probe confirmed to The Associated Press that the questioning will be under oath, held in private and handled by committee lawyers rather than any of the panel's six Senate members.

Victor Baird, the committee's counsel, would not confirm or deny Torricelli's planned appearance. Baird said under committee rules, "depositions are closed, as is the entire evidence-gathering process."

Chang, 59, pleaded guilty in June 2000 to obstructing justice and funneling $53,700 in illegal donations to Torricelli's 1996 Senate campaign. He had been cooperating with prosecutors and seeking leniency but early this year was sentenced to 18 months in prison.

Chang told prosecutors he gave the senator cash, Italian suits, antiques and other expensive gifts. In return, he said, Torricelli was to have helped in Chang's eventually unsuccessful effort to recoup more than $70 million he was owed by the North Korean government for grain shipments and in an ill-fated effort to purchase a South Korean insurance company.

Debra DeShong, Torricelli's press secretary, said it is "hard to believe that anyone would take anything that David Chang said seriously."

"He is now a convicted felon and someone who admitted to suborning perjury and obstructing justice," said DeShong. "All of these allegations have been thoroughly investigated to the point of exhaustion. It is time to accept the allegations are not true and bring this entire matter to a close."

TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: ethicscommittee; gifts; torricelli
I'm just curious how these two men (Torricelli VS Traficant) are going to be treated by the ethics committees.

Torricelli's name came up in Richard Detore testimony for James Traficant....

Torricelli received $136,000.worth of jewelry for his girlfriend.

Patrick Kennedy was mentioned too.

1 posted on 07/21/2002 11:39:05 PM PDT by Ready2go
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To: Ready2go
More on "The Torch" here
2 posted on 07/22/2002 12:04:56 AM PDT by MamaLucci
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To: Ready2go
Sen. Robert Torricelli will testify under oath

I don't think oaths have meaning for certain politicians.

3 posted on 07/22/2002 3:33:27 AM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer
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To: Ready2go
Check out, not one mention of this hearing. are the the same folks that run 2 of Jersey's biggest papers, the Star Ledger of Newark and the Times of Trenton.
4 posted on 07/22/2002 4:54:09 AM PDT by SternTrek
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To: SternTrek
Strange to say the least...compared to James Traficant being the top news story in the Ohio papers.

You don't think the NJ papers are trying to keep Torricelli's crimes away from the voters do you?

5 posted on 07/22/2002 2:48:57 PM PDT by Ready2go
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