House panel: Rangel violated ethics rules

July 22, 2010 at 7:52 PM

WASHINGTON, July 22 (UPI) -- A House investigation has concluded Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., probably violated ethics rules, but a lawyer for Rangel says he "has not been found guilty."

A House subcommittee spent almost two years investigating allegations against Rangel, 80, who stepped down as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee in March. The panel looked into a range of charges, including one that Rangel improperly rented apartments in New York's Harlem district for below market value, possibly in violation of a ban on House members accepting gifts valued at more than $50.

Citing a House member who has been briefed on the subcommittee's findings, The New York Times said the investigation concluded Rangel was probably in violation of ethics rules in a majority of the allegations against him, including some of the most serious charges.

A lawyer working on Rangel's defense told the newspaper that characterization of the subcommittee's findings in inaccurate.

"He has not been found guilty of anything," said the lawyer, who asked that his name not be reported.

The subcommittee is made up of two Democratic members and two Republican members of the House.

The House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct said Thursday it has established a special subcommittee to review the findings of the Rangel investigation and then rule on them, the Times reported.

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