A Senate clerk for Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK) has testified before a grand jury about the remodeling of the senator's home overseen by Veco, the AP reports
The Commerce Committee clerk, Barbara Flanders, who assisted Stevens with his personal financial records, also handed over documents related to the senator's finances and testified to what she knew about how the murky home remodeling project bills were paid.
Flanders is not the first Capital Hill staffer to be brought in to the investigation. Some of Stevens' former aides have already been questioned
by the FBI.
Stevens has arftully claimed
he paid every bill he received for the work done on his house. But the contractor on the job has described a suspicious payment process
. The contractor, Augie Paone, said he would submit invoices to Veco (the major oil services company up in Alaska) and then would receive payment from Stevens. Paone also said the checks were all coming from a special account set up for the job.
The AP also confirms that Interior Department investigators have joined in the investigation, probing a series of earmarks
Stevens obtained: "The Interior Department's inspector general and the Commerce Department have also joined the case to investigate Stevens' connections with a Seward, Alaska, marine science organization that operates the Alaska SeaLife Center."