Young paid legal bills from campaign funds

April 16, 2008 at 4:25 PM
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska, April 16 (UPI) -- U.S. Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, spent more than $1.1 million from campaign funds to help fend off Justice Department investigations, a federal document showed.

Campaign spending report filed with the Federal Election Commission indicated Young paid the legal bills from his campaign account even after he set up a legal expense fund to help pay legal fees, the Anchorage Daily News reported. He has until April 30 to explain the activity.

Young said in a statement his hands were tied because "both the Department of Justice and my lawyers have asked that I not comment further on the investigation."

Young hasn't been charged with any crime, but his name has been linked with several investigations, including an FBI probe into his ties to a Florida developer who held a fundraiser for Young then landed a $10 million earmark in the highway bill the congressman was moving through Congress when he chaired the House Transportation Committee.

Young's campaign spokesman, Mike Anderson, said most of the legal expenses went to lawyers who are

reviewing Young's congressional papers to determine whether they are privileged under the separation of powers doctrine, or if they must be turned over to federal investigators, the newspaper said.

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