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PA AG charged with lying under oath, leaking secret info

August 6th, 2015 by WCBC Radio

The state of Pennsylvania's top prosecutor was charged Thursday with leaking secret grand jury information and lying about her actions under oath.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane leaked information to a political operative to pass to the news media "in hopes of embarrassing and harming former state prosecutors she believed, without evidence, made her look bad," Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman said at a news conference announcing the charges.

Kane, the first woman and first Democrat elected attorney general in Pennsylvania, was charged with perjury, obstruction and abuse of office.

"No one is above the law, not even the chief law enforcement officer of the state of Pennsylvania," Ferman said.

"This is a sad day for the citizens of Pennsylvania and a sad day for all of us in law enforcement," she said. "When someone entrusted with upholding the law violates that oath, we are all victims."

Kane's driver, Patrick Reese of Dunmore, was also charged with indirect criminal contempt in the case. Ferman said he gained access to the files of the grand jury that was investigating his boss.

Kane didn't immediately comment on the charges. A top aide said Thursday morning she was aware of news reports that she faces criminal charges and "has no reason to doubt them."

A grand jury recommended charges in December in connection with allegations Kane unlawfully leaked information from a 2009 investigation in what witnesses said was an attempt to embarrass critics.

Kane is the second state attorney general to face criminal charges this week. She's also the second Pennsylvania attorney general charged in the last 20 years.

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