Perdue fundraiser expected to plead guilty

Perdue fundraiser expected to plead guilty

Perdue fundraiser expected to plead guilty

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by Associated Press

WCNC.com

Posted on December 12, 2011 at 1:18 PM

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- A former top fundraiser for Gov. Beverly Perdue is expected to appear in court Wednesday to plead guilty to a charge related to campaign finance violations.

Peter Anthony Reichard of Greensboro was indicted last month on a felony count of obstruction of justice.

He is accused of funneling $32,000 in under-the-table payments from a wealthy Perdue donor through a private company he controlled to pad the salary of a full-time campaign fundraiser. Reichard was Perdue's campaign finance director in 2007-08, at the time the illegal payments were made.

"We expect this case to be resolved Wednesday, unless something weird happens," said Hart Miles of Raleigh, Reichard's lawyer.

Miles and Wake District Attorney Colon Willoughby said Monday they could not comment on whether a plea agreement had been reached or the terms of a potential deal.

Willoughby said the criminal cases against three others with ties to Perdue will move forward into next year. That could prove uncomfortable for the Democratic governor, who will be campaigning for re-election in 2012.

Juleigh Sitton of Morganton was indicted on two felony charges, accused of accepting the secret salary payments from Reichard. She recently resigned from Perdue's staff as director of the governor's Western Office.

Perdue family friend Trawick H. "Buzzy" Stubbs Jr. of New Bern faces felony charges for providing more than $28,000 in undisclosed flights on private planes to Perdue as she ran for governor. Stubbs, who was the law partner of the governor's deceased first husband, had already provided Perdue's campaign with the maximum $4,000 contribution allowed under state law.

In February, Willoughby charged Robert Lee Caldwell of Morganton with a felony for allegedly deceiving Perdue's campaign by hiding the source of money used to pay for a 2007 flight provided to Perdue. A retired state magistrate, Caldwell is accused of soliciting a check for a campaign donation to Perdue from Morganton barber James Fleming.
 

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