Saturday, October 14, 2006

Oh, that crazy Curt Weldon, he's at it again.

The Inquirer reports today that:

"The F.B.I is investigating whether U.S. Rep. Curt Weldon (R., Pa.) used his influence to help is daughter win consulting contracts, sources say. . . Charles Sexton, a politcal ally of the congressman and a business partner of his daughter. . . Karen Weldon, 32, formed a public relations firm, Solutions North America, in 2002, and won $1 million in contracts from two Russian energy firms and a Serbian family with ties to Slobodan Milosevic."

The Inquirer reports the investigation was started after a 2004 story about the deal in the LA Times. "The Inquirer reported in 2004 that Weldon had lobbied federal officials on behalf of one of those firms, Itera, a huge and controversial Russian natural gas company. Weldon also complained to Karl Rove, President Bush's top political adviser, about Itera's treatment by the U.S. Trade and Development Agency. . . Itera paid $500,000 to Karen Weldon and Sexton's firm. The contract was signed on Sept. 30, 2002, six days after the congressman helped arrange a dinner at the Library of Congress to honor Itera and Igor Makarov. Isn't that intersting, another Republican congressman doing shady deals with Russian mobsters.

According to

"Karen Weldon said she found her second client, Saratov Aviation, a Russian aerospace manufacturer, in December 2002, through a family friend, who had worked with her father to foster U.S.-Russian business ties. In January 2003 Curt and Karen Weldon visited Saratov's plant in Russia. After the trip, Saratov signed a contract to pay SNA for $20,000 per month plus a 10% commission, both dependent on new business generated. After the trip, Weldon contacted the U.S. Naval Air Systems Command (Navair) concerning Saratov's products. In September, Navair and Saratov signed a nonbinding letter of intent that called for Navair to seek funding to develop the Saratov's technology. In November the Saratov contract was rewritten to remove the commission (illegal for federal contractors) and to deliver payment to Solutions Worldwide Inc., another Karen Weldon-Charles Sexton venture. Saratov began paying the new firm $20,000 a month in December 2003."

Doesn't sound fishy at all, does it? All precfectly on the up-and-up. You betcha!


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