AUGUST 25, 2004
Senator Also May Have Set Up Meetings Between Chinese Firms, U.S. Officials
WASHINGTON, D.C., Aug. 25, 2004 – Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, today released recently declassified documents showing that Democratic presidential nominee Sen. John Kerry accepted laundered contributions for his 1996 re-election campaign from the Communist Chinese government and that, in exchange, he may have arranged meetings between Chinese aerospace executives and U.S. government officials.
Obtained from the FBI through Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act requests, the documents are related to the FBI’s “Chinagate” investigation into theClintoncampaign’s acceptance of contributions from Communist Chinese government sources. Among the documents released is an investigative outline dated March 27, 1998, that details the FBI’s “proposed areas of inquiry” into the actions of Democratic fund-raiser Johnny Chung, including questioning him about meetings Sen. Kerry set up with China Aerospace executives and about a fund-raising event for the senator in Los Angeles. The other document, datedAug. 24, 1998, requests a polygraph of Chung, mentioning that he laundered contributions for the Clinton/Gore ’96 election campaign and for Sen. Kerry. The documents are heavily redacted, and Judicial Watch is appealing the FBI’s decision to keep secret portions of the documents.
Chung pled guilty in March 1998 to election law violations and, in a plea bargain, began cooperating with the FBI. Judicial Watch represents Chung in a lawsuit against Justice Department officials who, during theClintonadministration, leaked information about Chung’s cooperation with the department’s Campaign Finance Task Force. The unauthorized and illegal release from a sealed plea agreement of information, including the fact that he and his family were in protective custody inCalifornia, put the lives of Chung and his family in jeopardy.
“These disturbing FBI documents raise further questions about Sen. Kerry’s involvement in what looks like a quid pro quo (cash for meetings) with the Communist Chinese,” said Judicial Watch PresidentTom Fitton.