Las Vegas Sun

September 19, 2019

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Boggs’ spending will get a second look

Campaign Contributions and Expenses Reports for former Clark County Commissioner Lynette Boggs

State agents said Wednesday they will investigate former Clark County Commissioner Lynette Boggs’ reported use of $15,900 in campaign funds to pay a criminal defense lawyer.

Jerry Hafen, deputy chief of the Nevada Investigation Division, said a Sun story Wednesday about Boggs’ payment claims on her latest campaign reports prompted his agency to take another look at her campaign activities.

An Investigation Division probe last year led District Attorney David Roger and later a county grand jury to charge Boggs with four criminal campaign violations stemming from her unsuccessful 2006 bid for reelection.

“We’re going to look into any other potential violations that might have occurred,” Hafen said.

A campaign finance report that Boggs filed Jan. 15 says that in May 2007 she paid her former criminal defense attorney, William Terry, $10,000. That reported payment came eight days after state investigators asked Roger to prosecute Boggs on the four felony counts she now faces in District Court. Those counts stem from accusations she lived outside her commission district and used campaign cash to pay her children’s nanny.

Boggs also listed a Dec. 29, 2006, payment of $5,900 to Terry on a previous campaign finance report.

But almost four months after the most recent payment Boggs listed, Terry announced during a September 2007 court appearance in Boggs’ felony case that he was stepping down as her attorney.

“I’ve received no compensation for any work that I’ve done on this,” Terry said.

That statement seems to contradict the payment claims Boggs makes on her latest campaign reports.

Boggs’ current attorney, Gabriel Grasso, said Tuesday that he thought the $15,900 in payments to Terry was for previous work Terry had done for her. Terry represented Boggs in an unrelated ethics matter, but that case was dismissed in January 2006, almost a year before the reported $5,900 payment and about 16 months before the reported $10,000 payment.

Hafen said it is unclear whether Boggs unlawfully received campaign money after her term ended.

“It looks suspicious, but there doesn’t appear to be any (state law) prohibiting her from collecting contributions for a future campaign,” Hafen said.

Boggs has given no public indication that she will run for office.

Deputy Secretary of State Matt Griffin said state law requires former candidates to dispose of campaign money by the 15th day of the second month after losing an election. He also said former candidates are not allowed to raise campaign money after that date.

“Only candidates and officeholders are allowed to raise money,” Griffin said.

In Boggs’ situation she would have been required to dispose of her campaign funds by Jan. 15 last year, and she would not have been allowed to raise campaign money after that — unless she is running for office.

Her campaign finance report, however, says she spent $12,059.48 from February through July 2007, including the $10,000 payment to Terry in May. It also says she accepted a total of $10,000 on Jan. 24 from five companies related to Focus Property Group.

Violating state campaign law can carry a civil penalty of up to $5,000 per violation.

Terry’s secretary said Wednesday he had no comment, and repeated attempts to reach Grasso for comment were unsuccessful.

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