Hale Accused Of Selling Information To Conservative Groups
By Terry Frieden and Pierre Thomas/CNN
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (April 8) -- An Arkansas woman claims conservative groups paid Independent Counsel Ken Starr's chief Whitewater trial witness cash for information while the witness was cooperating in Starr's investigation.
In her first television interview, Caryn Mann alleges her ex-live-in boyfriend Parker Dozhier paid David Hale for secret information. That information was then provided to the persons working for the conservative magazine The American Spectator.
"He [Dozhier] would say you know we can't give David [Hale] big bills ever," Mann said. "You know it's always got to be small bills."
Mann's allegations of payoffs from right-wing operatives, funneled through Dozhier to Hale, have prompted Attorney General Janet Reno to declare the charges "must be pursued." Reno is expected to announce soon who should have jurisdiction to look into the claims.
Hale's Little Rock attorney blasted Mann for her allegations, and questioned her credibility.
None of Mann's allegations have been publicly corroborated. Sources close to her say others will step forward to support her charges, however.
In an interview at the office of her attorney David Matthews, Mann repeated her contention that money from Richard Mellon Scaife had been funneled to Hale for inside information on Starr's probe. She said she did not personally see the money placed in Hale's possession, but that Dozhier had discussed the plan with her.
Josh Rand, Mann's 17-year-old son, accompanied her to the CNN interview and also consented to be questioned on camera. Rand said he had seen Dozhier hand money to Hale on three occasions.
Dozhier, who runs a bait shop on Lake Catherine near Hot Springs, Ark., adamantly denies paying Hale for information about the independent counsel's investigation.
Dozhier refused to be interviewed. But in a brief off-camera conversation with CNN at his bait shop this weekend, he too attacked Mann's credibility.
Dozhier said he had been a friend of Hale's for 30 years, and had allowed him to stay at his lake cabins "on occasion when there was a vacancy." He admits receiving funds as a "stringer" but gave no other details. He was quoted by The Associated Press as saying he had received $1,000 a month for about three years to provide newspaper clippings to individuals associated with the American Spectator.
Mann paints a menacing picture of a plot aimed at ousting President Bill Clinton.
She scoffs at the idea of her being a tool of the White House. Matthews, her attorney, makes no secret of his longtime friendship with the president. Matthews says he was an elector for Clinton in the last presidential election.
Mann says there was "most definitely" a right-wing conspiracy at work designed to undermine Clinton. "I lived it for two years," she said.
Mann named Hale, Dozhier and University of Arkansas Little Rock professor Jimmy Peck as members of a right-wing inner circle, along with David Henderson and Steve Boynton,who she identified as the "Washington" end of the Richard Mellon Scaiffe-funded operation she witnessed.
Mann said she did not believe Starr could conduct an objective investigation of her charges. She said she hoped Reno will give the job to the Justice Department or to the federal judge in Little Rock who presided over the Whitewater trial.
Hale was a key witness for Starr's prosecutors in the first Whitewater trial which ended with the convictions of former Clinton business partners James and Susan McDougal, and of former Arkansas Governor Jim Guy Tucker.
Hale, a former Little Rock lender, says Clinton pressured him to make an illegal SBA-backed loan to Susan McDougal.
Mann said she had been afraid to come forward, but felt compelled to do so after the Monica Lewinsky allegations broke. She said she thought that was the result of ongoing efforts by the conspirators. Mann claims the development was consistent with what Dozhier had told her two years ago. She says Dozhier had disclosed to her at that time that the Paula Jones case would never go to trial, but he was excited about what else it would trigger.
"He said because of the Paula Jones case we're going to bring another 'broad' forward, and we're going to get the president, and we're going to get him on obstruction of justice and perjury and when we finish with him he's going to be impeached and Hillary will probably even leave him," Mann said.
Mann said when Lewinsky allegations were made public, "I was extremely frightened not just for me and my son but for the whole country."
Mann has moved from Hot Springs to Bentonville, Ark., where she works at a funeral home. She admits dabbling in astrology but insists that has nothing to do with her tale of intrigue. Her son lives with her and is a freshman in chemical engineering at the University of Arkansas in nearby Fayetteville.