Local Politics

More subpoenas issued in John Edwards investigation

Posted October 6, 2010 5:47 p.m. EDT

— A federal grand jury in Raleigh has issued a number of new subpoenas in its investigation of two-time Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards, his attorney said Wednesday.

Raleigh attorney Wade Smith said he doesn't know who has been subpoenaed or when the grand jury would call them as witnesses.

The grand jury has been investigating for more than a year whether any money from the Edwards campaign was used illegally to hide his affair with Rielle Hunter.

Hunter, a campaign staffer hired to produce promotional videos, gave birth to Edwards' daughter in February 2008.

Andrew Young, a former Edwards aide, claimed to be the father of the child during the 2008 campaign. Edwards admitted to the affair after dropping out of the campaign, but he didn't acknowledge that he was the girl's father until last January.

Both Young and Hunter appeared before the grand jury last year.

Young, who has written a tell-all book about the Edwards campaign and the affair, later told WRAL News that more than $1 million was spent to conceal the affair.

Rachel "Bunny" Mellon, heiress to the fortunes of 19th century industrialist Andrew Mellon and the founder of the Warner-Lambert pharmaceutical company, gave Edwards at least $700,000 to cover expenses for Hunter, according to Young. He said Texas lawyer Fred Baron, who was Edwards' campaign finance chairman, funded other expenses.

The money was given on the side, not as campaign donations, Young said, adding that Baron knew what it was for but that Mellon did not.

Smith initially said no campaign funds were used to conceal the affair, but he later backed off that statement.