FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASECRM
THURSDAY, JUNE 14, 2001(202) 514-2007
WWW.USDOJ.GOVTDD (202) 514-1888
FORMER EMPLOYEE OF MEDIA CONSULTANT TO BUSH CAMPAIGN PLEADS
GUILTY TO MAIL FRAUD AND PERJURY IN LEAK OF DEBATE PREPARATION MATERIALS TO GORE ASSOCIATE
AUSTIN, TEXAS The Department of Justice announced that Juanita Yvette Lozano of Austin, Texas, a former employee of Maverick Media, the primary media consultant to George W. Bush's Presidential Campaign, pled guilty today to charges stemming from her release of the Bush Campaign's debate preparation materials to former Congressman Tom Downey, a close associate of former Vice President Al Gore. Lozano, 30, pled guilty to mail fraud and perjury before the grand jury that was investigating the leak. In exchange for Lozano's guilty plea, the government has agreed to dismiss one count of making false statements to the FBI. Lozano was indicted on the charges in March, 2001.
As part of the plea agreement, Lozano admitted that she gathered and copied more than 120 pages of debate preparation documents and a 60-minute video tape of a private debate preparation session involving Bush and his key advisors. Lozano then used her home and office computers the week before the leak to gather information about Tom Downey, including his street address in Washington, DC. Downey is a close associate of Vice President Gore who was slated to assist Gore in his debate preparation. The indictment charges that Lozano sent the materials to Downey in an Express Mail package using the name "Amy Smith" and a false return address. According to the indictment, the package included a cover note bearing the name "Amy" which described the materials and stated, "I will call you soon to find out what other materials can be useful to the VP." After receiving the package on September 13, 2000, Downey reported the matter to the FBI and turned the materials over to them. Downey removed himself from any further role in Gore's debate preparation.
Lozano also admitted as part of her guilty plea that during the investigation of the leak she appeared before the grand jury in Austin, Texas, and testified falsely that she knew nothing about Downey or his location prior to the leak.
As part of the plea agreement, Lozano has agreed to a full debriefing by the FBI.
The case was investigated by the Washington Field Office and the Austin Resident Agency of the FBI, and is being prosecuted by the Public Integrity Section of the United States Department of Justice.