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U.S. Reps. refuse bribery case subpoenas

WASHINGTON, Sept. 19 (UPI) -- Subpoenas in the bribery trial involving former Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham, R-Calif., have been rejected by 13 members of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Lawyers for defense contractor Brent R. Wilkes obtained the subpoenas in an attempt to have the House members testify in Wilkes' federal trial.

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Most of the representatives targeted by the subpoenas were once involved with Cunningham in committees that approved Wilkes for government-funded plans, The Washington Post reported Wednesday.

After the subpoenas officially became part of the Congressional Record Monday, Wilkes' attorney was informed House rules would not permit the subpoenaed members to testify.

One House rule prohibits a member from testifying unless the testimony is "material and relevant" to the case.

Wilkes faces more than 30 criminal counts for his alleged part in the bribery scheme. Cunningham is serving an eight-year prison term.

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