WASHINGTON — The special prosecutor investigating former White House aide Lyn Nofziger has expanded his inquiry to include Nofziger's ties to Fairchild Industries Inc., a Virginia defense contractor, a company spokeswoman said today.
Deborah Tucker said the company has been contacted by the office of special prosecutor James McKay and subpoenas have been served on Fairchild Industries.
She said the investigation centers on Nofziger's activities on behalf of the Chantilly, Va.-based company shortly after he left the White House.
At that time, Fairchild Industries was attempting to persuade the Air Force to extend contracts for the A-10 aircraft and Nofziger was involved in this effort, a federal law enforcement source said today.
Tucker said the investigation involving Fairchild has been going on a number of weeks and predates the expansion of McKay's investigation last week to include Atty. Gen. Edwin Meese III.
The company is cooperating fully with the inquiry, Tucker said.
Meese was added to the investigation after acknowledging that he intervened on behalf of Wedtech Corp. to ensure that the Bronx defense contractor got a fair hearing from the Army on a $32-million small engine contract.
The Washington Post, quoting sources in today's edition, said that Nofziger became involved with Fairchild early in 1982 and that grand jury witnesses have been questioned about Meese's support for the company's efforts to prolong A-10 production.
Production of the A-10 was extended for a year, and Fairchild also received a new contract for spare parts for the plane, said Verne Orr, secretary of the Air Force in 1982.
Meanwhile, Henry Zuniga, a former White House aide who advocated that Wedtech receive the $32-million no-bid federal contract, conceded that he may have violated office policy by favoring the firm.
"Let me just say this: I never received one penny from Wedtech," Zuniga, who is now a Small Business Administration district director in El Paso, Tex., said in a telephone interview.
Zuniga worked in Elizabeth Dole's public liaison office at the White House in 1981 and 1982 when he was special assistant to President Reagan for Latino affairs.