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Robb Expects to Be Indicted in Taping of Wilder Call

December 18, 1992|From Reuters

NORFOLK, Va. — Sen. Charles S. Robb (D-Va.) said Thursday that he expected to be indicted on charges related to the illegal secret taping of a telephone call between Virginia Gov. L. Douglas Wilder and a political confidant.

Robb testified for nearly six hours before a federal grand jury in Norfolk that has been investigating the taping.

Asked by reporters if he expected to be indicted, Robb said: "Any other outcome at this level is pretty far-fetched."

"I am fully prepared for that," he said of the prospect of standing trial.

There was "no wrongdoing on my part on any legal issue," he said.

The son-in-law of former President Lyndon B. Johnson once harbored presidential ambitions, as did Wilder, who briefly campaigned this year before withdrawing.

The case stemmed from a Virginia Beach bar owner taping a 1988 car phone conversation between Wilder, then lieutenant governor, and the political confidant.

Wilder predicted in the call that Robb's political career would be finished because of reports that Robb associated with drug users and prostitutes.

The tape then was passed along to a Robb aide and leaked to the news media in hopes of making Wilder, a longtime Robb rival, look like the villain.

Three former top Robb aides have pleaded guilty over their roles in the affair.

Robb has repeatedly maintained that he knew only generally about the tape and that he told his aides not to leak it.

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