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THE NATION | IN BRIEF / NEW JERSEY

No Extortion Evidence Found, Lawyer Claims

October 25, 2004|From Times Wire Services

A federal investigation has uncovered no evidence that a former aide to Gov. James E. McGreevey tried to extort millions of dollars from him by threatening a sexual harassment suit, according to the aide's lawyer.

Paul Batista, Golan Cipel's lawyer, said federal officials told him that Cipel and another attorney for his client acted properly during settlement talks in the weeks before Aug. 12, when McGreevey announced that he was gay, had engaged in an extramarital affair with another man and would resign Nov. 15.

"I'm certain there's no chance they would be accused of a crime," Batista told the Philadelphia Inquirer. "As far as my job, I consider my work done."

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