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Swallow: Rings true?
Johnson: — makes sense. And you can go and verify that he actually did introduce that bill.
At several points, Johnson tells Swallow about what Johnson believes was an effort by online-poker companies to pay Reid to introduce a bill legalizing the game. Johnson does so as a way of bolstering his assertion that his own deal with Richard Rawle, the late owner of a Provo-based payday-loan chain, involved a similar effort.
Here, Tolman says, Swallow may have a duty to report a potential crime. "Is there an obligation at that point that he has a discussion with folks in his office?"
Cassell counters that, since it appears Swallow doesn’t believe a crime occurred, he need not report it.
"In any event," Cassell says, "federal law does not require people to report crimes to authorities — although good citizens do report crimes when they come to their attention."
For his part, Swallow maintains he "certainly did not receive any credible evidence about a plot to bribe a senator."
"He thought the comments seemed absurd," according to Utah Attorney General’s Office spokesman Paul Murphy.
Reid’s office has adamantly denied Johnson’s allegations as well.
Swallow: So why would they [investigators] even be thinking about Harry Reid?
Johnson: Well, because it’s — it’s in your emails.
Johnson: You’re — you spell it out pretty clearly that the money is going to —
Johnson: — influence Harry Reid. And I just feel like — I — I feel like — I feel like —
Swallow: What a curious (inaudible) thing for me to say. Wow.
Johnson has alleged that Swallow helped broker a bribe to enlist Reid’s help in derailing a Federal Trade Commission investigation of Johnson’s I Works business.
Like Reid, Swallow has denied any such scheme. Swallow says he merely helped Johnson hire lobbyists to work on his case.
In this exchange, according to Johnson, Swallow had sent him an email mentioning Reid and that it would likely take a lot of money to fix the businessman’s problems.
Tolman says investigators would be interested in seeing such an email, which could point to greater involvement by Swallow.
Cassell senses Johnson may be trying to set up Swallow.
"Johnson seems to be alleging bribery of a U.S. senator, which seems far-fetched to me," he says. "And Johnson has an obvious motive to try and concoct such a scheme and then try and suck Swallow into it."Next Page >
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