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Liu Aide Testifies in Campaign Fundraising Trial

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Sharon Lee, an aide to Comptroller John Liu, testified in federal court Thursday that she did propose to reimburse family members who donated to Liu's 2013 mayoral campaign.

But, Lee testified, the offer was born solely out of her enthusiasm over the campaign. She said no one took her up on her up on her offer, and the donations that were made โ€” from her mother and aunt โ€” weren't even eligible for campaign finance matching funds as both lived out of state.

Prosecutors are hoping to show campaign treasure Jenny Hou and fundraiser Oliver Pan, who are on trial on corruption charges, were part of a conspiracy to create so-called straw donors. Lee, who was called to testify by the prosecution, could also face charges. Both Lee and Hou offered to reimburse a small number of donors, prosecutors say, though so far neither has admitted or been shown to have made good on that offer.

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