State News

Moore says employees' group lawyer offered him a bribe

Posted June 12, 2008 12:04 p.m. EDT
Updated June 12, 2008 7:38 p.m. EDT

— Attorneys for State Treasurer Richard Moore say a state employees' group offered him a bribe.

Moore's lawyers said Thursday a lawyer for the State Employees Association of North Carolina offered to end the group's pending lawsuit against Moore he if would publicly endorse a bill sought by the association.

The bill would take away Moore's sole responsibility of the state pension fund and transfer it to a board.

"The real reason for the lawsuit was nothing more than to try to coerce the treasurer of the state of North Carolina for legislation that they want for themselves," Moore's attorney Kieran Shanahan said.

SEANC Executive Director Dana Cope called the bribery allegation preposterous.

"That's ridiculous," Cope said. "It will be thrown out of court."

He said attorney Tom Harris had offered settlement terms to Moore's attorneys but said it was only part of the bargaining to settle the lawsuit out of court.

Superior Court Judge Jim Hardin on Thursday heard Moore's request to dismiss the lawsuit because of Harris' conduct. He didn't immediately issue a ruling.

The association sued Moore several months ago, saying he failed to provide all the public records it sought related to the pension fund he oversees.

The bill at issue would shift authority over that pension fund to a board. Moore is currently the fund's sole trustee.