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Wednesday, January 31, 2007 

More on Maria Haley's Shady Business...

No wonder the Democrats are so excited about Maria Haley leading the Economic Development Department. She is a loyal, albeit shady fundraiser. It would be interesting to see how much money Beebe raised from the Asian and Phillipine community. We wonder if Beebe is rewarding her for more shady fundraising?

Check out this article that sums up her shady practices pretty well...The part about Haley is underlined for your convenience:

Investor's Business Daily
August 4, 1999

EX-IM BANK NOD TIED TO JOHN HUANG
By Paul Sperry, Investor's Business

President Clinton's appointee to a critical seat on the board of the Export-Import Bank has close ties to a crooked fund-raiser linked to China.

China is Ex-Im Bank's second-largest customer.

During the Clinton years, the bank has given more than $ 5.5 billion in loans to China to help it buy U.S. technology and equipment for power plants and other projects. The loans were OK'd despite proof that China sold nuclear-related equipment to Pakistan and other countries that worry U.S. security experts.

The White House hopes the Senate will quickly confirm D. Vanessa Weaver to fill one of three vacant seats on Ex-Im's five-member board. The lack of quorum is holding up $ 2.3 billion in loans.As a Clinton aide, Weaver often was in touch with Democratic Party fund- raiser Jian-Nan ''John'' Huang when he worked at the Commerce Department.

In May, Huang agreed to plead guilty to a fund-raising felony charge in exchange for his help in an ongoing Justice Department probe of 1996 campaign finance fraud. He has yet to enter a guilty plea.

Weaver and Huang exchanged at least 26 phone calls over a 17-month period in 1994 and 1995, records show.

Weaver also reached out to Huang in October 1996 when he hid from U.S. marshals for a week to avoid testifying in a lawsuit brought by Judicial Watch Inc. The public-interest law firm claims that Huang was involved in an illegal scheme at Commerce to sell seats on trade trips for Democratic donations.

''She (Weaver) called my wife in California,'' Huang testified after authorities finally caught up with him. ''As a courtesy, I returned her call to her home.''

Huang explained that Weaver and he are just ''good friends.'' Asked about her again in another Judicial Watch deposition in April, Huang took the Fifth.

Weaver, deputy White House director of presidential personnel, declined repeated requests for an interview.

The Senate Banking Committee canceled a Friday hearing on Weaver and other appointees. It hasn't reset a date. The Senate breaks for a month starting next week.

Chairman Phil Gramm, R-Texas, isn't likely to quiz Weaver, a former computer consultant, about her ties to Huang. ''I don't expect it to be anything that Sen. Gramm brings up,'' spokeswoman Christi Harlan said.

Ignoring the issue would be a mistake, one Hill investigator says.

''We're going to reward someone who's all over John Huang's call-back slips,'' he said.
The connection doesn't stop there, he says.

As often as three times a week, Huang would leave his Commerce office carrying a folder or briefcase and walk across the street to the Willard Hotel. There he'd visit the Washington office of Stephens Inc., an Arkansas-based brokerage.

Weaver's father, Vernon Weaver, headed the branch. A fellow Arkansan, he and Clinton go back more than 20 years.

The elder Weaver let Huang use an empty Stephens office to pick up overnight packages, make phone calls and fax documents.

His secretary, Paula Greene, testified before the Senate in 1997 that Weaver gave her strict orders to hide the setup. For instance, she says Weaver told her not to leave detailed phone messages for Huang when she called to alert him to a package or fax.

Phone records show Vernon Weaver made at least 27 calls to Huang from July 1994 to November 1995. Over that same period, Vanessa Weaver made at least 23 calls to Huang - two on the same day as her father.

The congressional investigator, who wished to go unnamed, suspects Vanessa Weaver was a White House ''go- between'' for her father and Huang. Her White House office is just across 15th St. from the Willard Hotel and the Commerce building.

Records show that at least 16 faxes sent in 1994 and 1995 from the Stephens office went to Lippo Group units in Jakarta, Indonesia; Hong Kong; and Los Angeles. Huang worked for the foreign conglomerate before joining Commerce. Lippo has partnered with Stephens on deals for more than a decade.
The government official appeared to still be conducting business with his old firm - a possible breach of federal conflict rules.

But there's a more troubling aspect to his Willard activities.

Several months before Huang joined Commerce, China Resources Holding Co., a front for Chinese military intelligence, bought a large stake in a Lippo unit called Hongkong Chinese Bank.

That made Lippo equal partners with Beijing's communist regime.

''Huang himself may possibly have had a direct financial relationship with the (Chinese) government,'' said the final report of the so-called Thompson committee, headed by Sen. Fred Thompson, R-Tenn., which probed foreign fund-raising in the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign.
The CIA briefed China- born Huang (who got a security clearance without a full background check) at least 37 times at Commerce. He got hundreds of classified documents on topics such as U.S.-China technology transfers.

Several of the faxes sent from the Stephens office correspond with Huang's CIA briefings.
For instance, the CIA briefed Huang at 9 a.m. on Oct. 5, 1994. Later that day, at 5:49 p.m., a fax was sent from the Stephens office to a Lippo office in Hong Kong.

Huang enjoyed unusual access to the White House. He visited at least 94 times and met with Clinton there at least 15 times.

At a Sept. 13, 1995, Oval Office meeting, Clinton decided to move Huang to the Democratic National Committee.

Phone logs show a pickup in calls from Vanessa Weaver's White House office to Huang starting on Sept. 15, 1995 - suggesting that ''she may have had some kind of campaign- financing role,'' the congressional source said.

The DNC gave Huang back roughly half - $ 1.6 million - of the money he raised in 1996. It can't say if the funds were obtained legally from U.S. sources.

Judicial Watch Chairman Larry Klayman cautions the Senate against rubber-stamping Weaver for the Ex-Im Bank post.

''What does she know about Chinagate?'' he said. ''Before she is confirmed, the Senate should do a full investigation.''

Ex-Im Bank spokesman Ken Murphy says the administration is eager to fill the $ 118,400 spot left open by Maria Haley, who rejoined the White House personnel office last month.

Haley was hoping for another term. But some senators reportedly objected, citing bad press over her meetings with key figures in the administration's fund-raising scandal.

One of them was Huang.


''Crony A is being replaced by Crony B,'' the Hill investigator quipped, referring to Weaver taking Haley's slot.

In 1994, Huang, then at Commerce, paid a visit to Haley at the Ex-Im Bank. He brought along his old Lippo boss, James Riady. While at the DNC, Huang called Haley at least five times.
Between 1994 and 1996, Ex-Im Bank gave up to $ 900,000 in export insurance to Lippo.

Haley repaid the visit, joining Huang on a Commerce trade trip to China in August 1994.

Huang and Haley go way back. They worked on deals when Haley was then- Gov. Clinton's trade contact at the Arkansas Industrial Development Commission.


In rushing to replace Haley with Weaver, the White House teed off a Democrat on the banking panel who had someone other than Weaver in mind - someone outside the administration and Arkansas network.

Sen. Jack Reed, D- R.I., was so angry, he objected to Friday's hearing and got it canceled.

''We have been dealing with the folks at the White House on this'' since February, said Greg McCarthy, a spokesman for Reed. ''They told us that (Reed's) nominee looked very good.''
Reed found out last Wednesday from a news report that the White House had snuck Weaver into the lineup.

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