Murtha’s dead, but DOJ still won’t release his files 

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington announced today that it is suing the Department of Justice for not releasing documents regarding the late Rep. John Murtha’s, D-Penn., earmark and lobbying activities which the non-profit legal watchdog group requested under the Freedom of Information Act in February.

CREW said privacy concerns were cited as one of the reasons DOJ refused to release the information, pointing out that they do not survive Murtha’s death in 2010.

In particular, CREW is seeking FBI records involving Murtha earmarks for defense contractors in his Pennsylvania district and for clients of former aide and convicted felon Paul Magliocchetti - who was sentenced in January to 27 months in federal prison for making  hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of illegal campaign contributions.

Magliocchetti’s PMA Group was a major fundraiser for Murtha and two other members of the powerful House Appropriations defense subcommittee: Rep. Jim Moran, D-Va., and Rep. Peter Visclosky, D-Ind.

CREW - which once called Murtha "one of the most corrupt members of Congress" - says it requested the records "in an effort to determine why DOJ never prosecuted Murtha," but DOJ maintains that none of three congressmen were aware of Magliocchetti’s scheme to use "straw donors" to funnel illegal campaign donations to members of Congress.

So why not just release the documents and prove it?

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