News Column

Christie Knew About Bridge Closures: Appointee

January 31, 2014

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chris christie
N.J. Gov. Chris Christie (file photo)

'Bridgegate' figure says Christie lied about GW Bridge lane closures
UPI Top Stories (Published: 31-Jan 2014 1:43 PM, Received: 1:43:54 PM)
Word Count: 352
A former Port Authority of New York and New Jersey official has evidence Gov. Chris Christie lied about the so-called Bridgegate scandal, his lawyer says.

Alan Zegas, an attorney for David Wildstein -- a former Christie appointee to the port authority -- said in a letter to the body Wildstein "contests the accuracy of various statements that the governor made about him and he can prove the inaccuracy of some," the (Newark) Star-Ledger reported Friday.

Wildstein, who ordered lane closures at the Fort Lee, N.J., side of the George Washington Bridge in September 2013, was among several Christie administration figures who either were fired or resigned after emails were released indicating the lane closures may have been politically motivated.

The closure caused traffic to back up for miles for several days. Christie said at a news conference last month he had no knowledge of the closure "in its planning or execution."

Zegas said in the letter to the port authority there is evidence "tying Mr. Christie to having knowledge of the lane closures, during the period when the lanes were closed."

The letter included a request to the authority to reconsider a decision not to cover Wildstein's legal bills.

The Port Authority declined to comment on the letter and Christie's office did not immediately respond to requests for comment, the Star-Ledger said.

In a separate development Friday, a lawyer for another former Christie official -- Bill Stepien -- wrote to New Jersey legislative investigators objecting to its subpoena of Stepien, saying Stepien will refuse to comply with a Monday deadline for turning over documents, the newspaper reported.

The letter from attorney Kevin Marion said "the very real possibility that his act of producing documents and things responsive to the subpoena might compel him to furnish a link in the chain of evidence that could be used to ensnare him in the ambiguous circumstances of a criminal prosecution -- and thus force him to become a witness against himself, in violation of his fundamental right against self-incrimination -- is a more than compelling reason to withdraw that instrument."

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Original headline: 'Bridgegate' figure says Christie lied about GW Bridge lane closures


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