Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Don't send emails to other guys telling them you love them, unless you mean it.....

Pete Sessions is silent on e-mail sent to accused banker

10:16 PM CST on Monday, December 28, 2009

By LORI STAHL / The Dallas Morning News

lstahl@dallasnews.com U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions hasn't responded to a report that he sent a supportive e-mail to banker R. Allen Stanford hours after Stanford was charged with swindling $7 billion from investors.

But the wording attributed to Sessions "resembles" something he might say to a "person in crisis," the congressman's spokeswoman said Monday.

The Miami Heraldreported Sunday that Sessions expressed his loyalty to Stanford at 11:31 a.m. on Feb. 17, hours after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charged the banker with bilking thousands of investors.

"I love you and believe in you," said the e-mail reportedly sent by Sessions, a Dallas Republican. "If you want my ear/voice – e-mail," said the message signed "Pete."

The newspaper did not say how it obtained the e-mail. It was featured prominently in a story revealing that federal officials are investigating $2.3 million in campaign contributions Stanford gave members of Congress, including Sessions.

Although the donations were previously known, Justice Department investigators are now looking to see whether Stanford was given special treatment by lawmakers he supported.

Sessions declined to comment to the Miami Herald and could not be reached Monday.

Emily Davis, his spokeswoman, said her office can't authenticate the e-mail, but she said that "Congressman Sessions believes that its contents resemble language he would use to communicate with a person in crisis to encourage right decisions and prevent further tragedy."

"With that being said, the congressman maintains the position that Mr. Stanford should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law," Davis said.

She added that Stanford "had everyone fooled" initially and that as "his scheme has become clear," Sessions withdrew his support.

Federal investigators are looking at lavish trips Stanford hosted for members of Congress, as well as the campaign money. Sessions met with Stanford on two Caribbean trips. Stanford also helped raise almost $40,000 for Sessions during a hard-fought election against former Rep. Martin Frost in 2004. Sessions won.

Sessions, who is chairman of the National Republican Campaign Committee, has co-signed a letter to the head of the SEC, urging that investors who were defrauded be covered by investor-protection programs.

"The alleged Ponzi scheme carried out by Allen Stanford ... was one of the most substantial financial crimes ever carried out in the U.S." and it "devastated" thousands of investors, the letter said.

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