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 TIME on politics Congressional Quarterly CNN/AllPolitics CNN/AllPolitics - Storypage, with TIME and Congressional Quarterly

Democratic supporter faces new charges

By Timothy McCaughan/CNN

March 9, 1999
Web posted at: 2:21 p.m. EST (1921 GMT)

WASHINGTON (March 9) -- Democratic supporter Yogesh Gandhi faces additional charges of tax evasion, mail and wire fraud, failing to file an income tax return and perjury, according to a new filing by the Justice Department's campaign finance task force.

Gandhi was previously indicted on one count of mail fraud relating to two false applications he had filed for credit cards.

In late 1996 the Democratic National Committee returned a $325,000 political contribution from Gandhi, a distant relative of the late Indian peace activist Mohandas Gandhi, because he would not supply proof of the money's origin. After reports surfaced in 1997 that Gandhi had considerable debts, he told CNN that he used his own money to make the contributions, and that no money came from international sources.

Senate investigators and media reports in 1997 showed Gandhi's donation coincided with seed money Gandhi received from a Japanese spiritual leader's organization.

Prior to the contribution, Gandhi presented President Bill Clinton with the "Gandhi Peace Award" and had his picture taken with the president.

The new Department of Justice information filing in San Francisco on Monday includes a second mail fraud charge, five counts of wire fraud, two counts of tax evasion, two counts of failing to file and income tax return and one count of perjury.

The second mail fraud charge relates to funds Gandhi had solicited for his Gandhi Memorial International Foundation that he used to pay personal debts. The mail fraud counts stem from Gandhi's false and improper reimbursement claims to Yoshio Tanaka, who was promoting Hogen Fukunaga, the Japanese spiritual leader.

The tax charges also revolve around Gandhi's relationship with that organization.

The perjury charge relates to stating under oath to the Immigration and Naturalization Service that he had never failed to file a federal income tax return.

Gandhi is one of 15 people charged in the Justice Department's ongoing campaign finance investigation.


Another Democratic fund-raiser indicted (7-13-98)

Democratic contributor arrested (3-5-98)

A campaign finance system run amok (8-1-97)


Justice Department Web site


Ethics in politics


Tuesday, March 9, 1999

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