Rangel's Legal “Whoa!”

Ethics probe is financial siphon

Congressman Charles Rangel, continually embattled, has paid out nearly three quarters of a million dollars in legal fees this year, the New York Post reported.

The Harlem rep has been the subject of a growing congressional ethics investigation that seems to have a life of its own, and he has spent $723,000 on legal fees, according to campaign filings released yesterday, the paper reported, breaking down how various sums of campaign funds went to  to several different lawyers and firms.

The House ethics panel is looking into Rangel's failure to declare income from a villa he owns and rents out on a beach in the Dominican Republic, as well as the storage of his vintage Mercedes in a House parking garage, among other things. They are also trying to get some solid answers on his use of four rent-stabilized apartments in Harlem; unauthorized use of congressional stationary; and a sweet tax-break he managed to wrangle for his Rangel Center.

Rangel's spokesman did not respond for comment to the Post.

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