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Lieberman seeks investigation of accused spy's finances

Sen. Joseph Lieberman wants to know whether an accused spy funneled money from China to the Republican Party.
Sen. Joseph Lieberman wants to know whether an accused spy funneled money from China to the Republican Party.

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WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Joseph Lieberman Sunday asked the Justice Department and the FBI to investigate whether an accused spy may have illegally funneled money from the government of China to the Republican Party in the 1990s.

Lieberman made the request in a letter to Attorney General John Aschcroft and FBI Director Robert Mueller, said Adam Kovacevich, press secretary to the Connecticut senator. He confirmed details to CNN of the story, which was first reported in Sunday's Washington Post.

Katrina Leung, accused of being a Chinese double agent, was also a political fund raiser for the Republicans.

Leung was recruited as an informant by the FBI in 1982, and has been charged with espionage. Her FBI handler, retired agent James Smith, has been charged with gross negligence for allowing her access to classified material. Officials say he had an affair with Leung.

Officials say Leung also had an affair with William Cleveland, another agent, now retired. Cleveland has not been charged.

CNN Producer Steve Turnham contributed to this report.


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