Josh Gerstein of the NYSun reports:
A fund-raising committee for Senator Clinton’s 2000 campaign has agreed to pay a $35,000 civil penalty and to concede that reports it made to the federal government understated by more than $700,000 donations to a California celebrity gala held to benefit her Senate bid.
The agreement between the committee, New York Senate 2000, and the Federal Election Commission ends the campaign finance regulation agency’s inquiry into a complaint filed in 2001 by an entrepreneur who financed the fund-raising concert, Peter Paul.
“The civil payment assessed to New York Senate 2000 resolves the question of underreported in-kind contributions, and there will be no further action on this matter,” an attorney for the fundraising committee, Marc Elias, said.
The conciliation agreement, ap proved at a Federal Election Commission meeting last month, has not yet been made public. However, three sources with knowledge of the terms outlined the deal to The New York Sun.
Under the agreement, the committee will amend its public reports to show that Paul’s in-kind gifts to the fund-raising concert were understated by $721,895. The committee and its treasurer, Andrew Grossman, agreed that there was probable cause to believe that the filings violated federal campaign finance law. However, the committee claimed that it relied on “reasonable processes” to verify the data it filed.
A spokesman for Mrs. Clinton, Philippe Reines, said the senator was not available for an interview yesterday.
Peter Paul comments on his blog:
This amounts to a civil indictment of Hillary’s Joint Fundraising Committee and its treasurer for filing false FEC reports for Hillary Clinton. Grossman’s agreement with this finding of probable cause by the FEC, that he did file false reports that hid more than $720,000 in contributions made by Peter Paul to Hillary’s campaign, amounts to his admission to violating the criminal statute Title 18 Sec 1001, making false statements to government agencies, which Hillary’s finance director David Rosen was indicted and tried for in May,2005.
Hillary must now be compelled to explain why, as a candidate who was notified that false reports had been filed by her campaign relating to the largest contribution to her campaign and the identity of her largest donor, she refused to cause the false reports to be amended or footnoted, and why she allowed yet a third false report to be filed by Grossman weeks after she received various sworn pleadings and statements accompanied by checks and invoices.
This third false report, made in direct response to an inquiry by the FEC regarding earlier reports on Event 39- the Hollywood Farewell Gala Salute to President Clinton – was clearly an intentional false statement made with wanton disregard for its truthfulness, with the full knowledge, complicity and collusion of Hillary Clinton and her counsel, David Kendall. (This fact is confirmed by the affidavit of service of process of the civil suit Paul v Hillary R Clinton et al filed on June 18, 2001 and served on David Kendall on July 11, 2001).
Hillary will attempt to spin the finding by the FEC as an exoneration of her other Senate campaign committee and herself, because she was not found to be liable under FEC law. She will not refer to the fact that the FEC has no jurisdiction over Title 18 of the US Code. Her potential criminal liability based on Title 18, for aiding and abetting, conspiring, colluding with and misprisoning Mr Grossman’s filing of material false statements to the FEC and the IRS, and then obstructing the federal investigation of those actions that led to the indictment and prosecution of her finance director, is under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Justice Department.
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