2010-06-25 / Top Stories

Meeks Admits Didn't Disclose Loans

Won’t Say Who Loaned Him The Money
By Howard Schwach

Congressman Gregory Meeks has admitted to House officials that he took $55,000 in personal loans without disclosing the loans on his last financial reports, but has refused to disclose who gave him the money or what he did with it, as required by the rules of the House of Representatives and the law.

After being caught in his lie by the New York Daily News, Meeks filed amended financial disclosure reports on Monday of this week that show he took one loan of $40,000 in 2007 and another for $15,000 in 2008.

Records show, however, that he left out the name of the creditors, a detail required on the Congressional forms.

Meeks sent a letter to the Clerk of the House along with the amended form, officials say.

That letter said that the $40,000 loan had been repaid and that he was in the process of paying off the $15,000 loan.

A spokesperson for a political watchdog group told the Daily News that deliberate failure to disclose where the loans came from could result in criminal charges.

“There are federal criminal issues here,” said Melanie Sloan, director of Citizens For Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. “The fact that he did not disclose it indicates he was deliberately hiding it. It’s unlikely that it was an accident. Meeks did something wrong and is hiding it.”

Meeks’ 2010 disclosure form, which was filed a month late and was made public last week by the House, showed that Meeks has no assets and owes between $50,000 and $100,000 to a Queens real estate agent who had done lots of work for Meeks in the past. Records show that this is the third year in a row that Meeks has claimed he has no assets and large liabilities despite the fact that he lives in a posh home that, realty records show, is worth $1.2 million and travels extensively all over the world “on public business.”

Meeks, who is under investigation by both state and federal authorities in connection with his non-profit organizations and his involvement with the Aqueduct Racino fiasco, says that he lives on his $174,000 Congressional salary and that of his wife, who is a senior policy advisor at the New York Academy of Medicine.

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