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Arizona developer's lawyer wants to rebut U.S. House charges

David Bernhardt
Posted at 4:21 PM, May 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-19 19:21:56-04

PHOENIX (AP) — An attorney for an Arizona real estate developer who was referred to the Department of Justice for a criminal investigation by congressional Democrats wants to publicly rebut the allegations.

Lawyer Lanny Davis said Thursday that Arizona developer Michael Ingram and former Trump administration Interior Secretary David Bernhardt are improperly accused of bribery by Democrats on the House Natural Resources Committee.

The panel last week sent a criminal referral that said undisclosed meetings and campaign contributions to the Trump Victory Fund appeared to lead to approval for Ingram's massive development in southern Arizona.

Bernhardt called the allegations a “pathetic effort by career politicians to fabricate news.”

Democrats on the House Natural Resources Committee on Wednesday, May 11, asked the Justice Department to investigate whether Bernhard engaged in possible criminal conduct while helping the developer get a crucial permit for a housing project.

House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rep. Raul Grijalva (D) and Rep. Katie Porter (D) of California say Bernhardt pushed for approval of the Villages at Vigneto, a proposed 28,000-home development in southern Arizona near the endangered San Pedro River.