Norton associate faces charges in Abramoff scandal
Italia Federici, an associate of former Interior secretary Gale Norton, faces up to five charges in connection with the Jack Abramoff scandal.

Federici worked on Norton's failed U.S. Senate campaign in the 1990s. She then helped Norton create the Council of Republicans for Environmental Advocacy.

Norton cut her ties to the group after joining the Bush administration. But Federici stayed on board and in close contact with the Interior Department -- through Norton's former deputy, J. Steven Griles, who recently pleaded guilty to lying about his relationship with Abramoff.

Federici introduced Griles to Abramoff in early March 2001, a week before Griles was nominated to his post. At the time, Federici and Griles were dating.

Federici soon became a conduit between Griles and Abramoff, who wanted to influence decisions affecting his tribal clients. Abramoff got his tribal clients to donate at least $500,000 to CREA.

Get the Story:
Interior flap trickles down (The Denver Post 4/5)
GOP Advocate Targeted in Abramoff Probe (AP 4/4)
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Relevant Documents:
DOJ Press Release | Charge of Information | Plea Agreement | Statement of Facts | Earl Devaney Statement

November 2, 2005, Hearing:
Transcript | Webcast | Testimony

Cobell Declarations:
November 15, 2001 | June 4, 2002

Inspector General Report:
J. Steven Griles Investigation (March 2004)

From the Indianz.Com Archive:
Norton stripping BIA of trust duties (November 16, 2001) | Tribal leaders in uproar over proposal (November 16, 2001) | Griles taking lead on trust reform (November 5, 2001)

Indianz.Com Profile:
The downfall of J. Steven Griles (3/26)
Deputy Secretary: J. Steven Griles (3/9)

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