Chinese billionaire finds himself at center of a new scandal

AP News
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Posted: Oct 06, 2015 4:49 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — For the second time in three decades, a billionaire Chinese real estate mogul is central to a scandal over whether his money was used to buy influence.

Authorities say in the 1990s, Ng Lap Seng (eeng-lap-sing) funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Democratic National Committee. He visited the White House at least 10 times and was photographed with then-President Bill Clinton and first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Now, a federal prosecutor has charged him with playing a central role in a $1.3 million bribery scheme to corrupt a former president of the United Nations General Assembly.

His lawyer has said his arrest two weeks ago was a misunderstanding. Investigators say he wanted to secure his legacy by bribing his way to building a multibillion-dollar U.N.-connected conference center.