Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Chainsaw Charlie Taylor Involved In US Attorney Scandal?

Intriguing article from McClatchy with the details about allegations that an investigation into Charles Taylor was quashed due to pressure from the John Ashcroft DOJ. Taylor owns Blue Ridge Savings & Loan, a bank headquartered in Asheville, North Carolina.
Four years ago in Asheville, N.C., a lawyer filed a document that contained a scandalous accusation: The U.S. attorney general had intervened in a local bank-fraud case and prevented investigators from questioning one of Congress' most powerful members, Rep. Charles Taylor.

But many in the western part of the state recall a particular case a few years back that was handled quietly in the North Carolina mountains, when a pair of lawyers thought that Taylor, a North Carolina Republican, ought to be questioned over a loan-fraud case that involved the bank he owns.

"Essentially the question is, `Why was he not interrogated? Why was he not interviewed?'" asked Forrest A. Ferrell, the lawyer who leveled the charges in 2003. "He knew about it all and should've at least been interrogated about it."

There were suggestions that Charles Taylor approved the loans himself, knowing they were fraudulent but he was never interviewed even though he owned the bank. Lingering questions remain as to why he was never questioned.

Charles Taylor also was the first American to own a bank in Russia. There are questions about who is parteners are in that operation. Taylor would do "fact-finding" missions to Russia, and conduct personal business all on the dime of his campaign, and the taxpayers according to allegations. Thank goodness Heath Shuler beat him in November.

This is serious business here. Taylor was accused by the Wall Street Journal of putting in earmarks to help his businesses, and threatened to sue. Two examples were funding a park in front of the main branch of his bank, and another was building a road that ran next to a parcel of land he owned. The guy is a crook who hasn't been caught yet is all.

He likely isn't the only one here who got "protection" from the DOJ. I don't know what kind of an agenda the democrats can accomplish when they will be so very busy investigating all the crooked things done by this administration.