Updated 02/17/2012 10:56 PM
Liu Fundraiser Pleads Not Guilty To Wire Fraud Charges
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Xing Wu Pan, a major fundraiser for City Comptroller John Liu, pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and wire fraud charges during his arraignment in Downtown Manhattan on Saturday.
Prosecutors say Oliver Pan told an undercover FBI agent he would use straw donors to funnel $16,000 in over-the-limit contributions to the comptroller's 2013 campaign.
In court on Friday, assistant U.S. attorneys said the evidence includes wiretaps and undercover video.
Pan's attorney, Irwin Rochman, denied the charges and took issue with the undercover FBI operation.
"There is very little we can say ethically at this point in public. We told the judge that we intend to make a motion to dismiss the indictment based on outrageous misconduct by the government. We are going to look at their discovery materials and see what they have and when we file that motion, we are happy to talk at some length about it," said Rochman.
According to a complaint from November, Pan allegedly admitted to the scheme, but his attorney would not discuss that on Friday.
"It's not something we are going to respond to. We are going to try the case in the courtroom," said Rochman.
In the city's Asian-American communities, the investigation of Liu's 2013 campaign has sparked concern. An alliance of community groups is meeting to plan campaign finance education workshops.
"For people that are hosting fundraisers, oftentimes they are not familiar with the rules, the laws. The more people are familiar with that, the more people that understand, the better it is going to be for the community," said Cao O of the Asian American Federation.
Liu has not been implicated in any wrongdoing. When NY1 reached out to his campaign for comment about Pan's plea on Friday, all they had to say was "no comment."