Testimony implicates Richardson in pay-to-play scheme
Newly released testimony from an unrelated case implicates former Gov. Bill Richardson in pay to play in the awarding of a lucrative state contract to CDR Financial Products.
“A former official with CDR Financial Products, Douglas Goldberg, testified as a prosecution witness in April in a federal criminal antitrust case involving bid rigging in the municipal bond industry.
“The antitrust case had no ties to New Mexico, but defense attorneys attempted to discredit Goldberg’s testimony by examining his role in CDR getting a 2004 contract with the New Mexico Finance Authority.
“Goldberg testified that he delivered a $25,000 political contribution to the governor at a fundraiser and that Richardson then said, ‘Tell the big guy I’m going to hire you guys.’
“Goldberg said he understood ‘big guy’ to mean his direct boss, Stewart Wolmark, who Goldberg testified had given him the check.
“Richardson’s attorney, Peter Schoenburg, said Friday, ‘Gov. Richardson denies any wrongdoing. The witness is not credible, the allegations are old and discredited, and the testimony is simply false.’”
As NMPolitics.net reported at the time, sometime in 2008 investigators began probing allegations that CDR Financial Products received a state investment contract that paid almost $1.5 million in exchange for $110,000 in contributions to two Richardson political committees and his 2006 gubernatorial re-election campaign. CDR was paid to advise the NMFA on interest-rate swaps and restructuring escrow funds for $1.6 billion in bonds related to the transportation project dubbed GRIP, or Governor Richardson’s Investment Partnership.
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