Nevada AG candidate calls foe’s campaign fundraising ‘extortion’

Republican attorney general candidate Craig Mueller has filed a racketeering lawsuit against opponent Wes Duncan.

Mueller alleged that Duncan, a former first assistant attorney general, “solicited campaign contributions from the very businesses which he held regulatory and/or disciplinary authority over.”

Duncan, who has outraised Mueller by a considerable margin, fired back in a letter that called the complaint “frivolous.”

“Your decision to resort to the courts in the last two weeks of the election instead of the voters reminds me of the old adage that a desperate and drowning man will clutch a straw in order to save himself,” Duncan wrote. “Your lawsuit is that straw and nothing more. This kind of stunt is beneath the office that we are both seeking, and as an attorney practicing law in this state for 25 years you certainly know better.”

In April, the Review-Journal reported that prior to leaving his job in the attorney general’s office in September 2017, campaign finance reports show Duncan had raised some $190,000. Nevada law allows public employees to raise money for their political campaigns as long as they do so while away from their public job.

Mueller said he asked five other attorneys about his complaint before filing and personally asked Duncan to return the money.

“He’s been in politics too long,” Mueller told the Review-Journal on Friday. “He violated the law repeatedly. He has failed to act. I don’t know why he doesn’t see it. I don’t know why he hasn’t acted. I honestly expected him to write a check and quietly start getting the money back four months ago.”

Senate Majority Leader Aaron Ford, A Democrat running for attorney general, raised $68,000 in that same time frame.

In total, Duncan’s campaign raised roughly $516,000 in 2017, and spent about $76,000, meaning that more than one-third of his campaign’s 2017 totals came before he left the attorney general’s office. Duncan’s campaign manager, John Vick, said that Duncan had been testing the “viability” of a run for office.

Through May 22, Duncan’s campaign has raised more than $417,000 this year, while Mueller collected just shy of $88,000, according to the latest records from the Nevada Secretary of State’s website.

Duncan served two terms in the Nevada Assembly before working as first assistant attorney general from early 2015 until, when he took a job at the law firm Hutchison & Steffen.

Mueller’s complaint, which was filed this week and alleges a extortion under the Nevada Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, states that Duncan collected $190,000 from businesses and entities including Station Casinos, Resort World Las Vegas, Nevada Power Company and Comcast Corporation.

From January 2017 to August, Duncan and his campaign committee “agreed to and did in fact conduct and participate in the conduct of the enterprise’s affairs through a pattern of continuous and related racketeering activity in a closed-ended scheme,” Mueller’s complaint states.

In an email, Duncan’s campaign advisor Jeremy Hughes wrote that “if Mr. Mueller follows through with this frivolous lawsuit then we will take every available civil litigation action, including whether a complaint should be filed with the state bar.”

Contact David Ferrara at dferrara@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-1039. Follow @randompoker on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Crime
Metro Capt. Jaime Prosser gives update of officer-involved shooting
Metro Capt. Jaime Prosser provides an update about an officer-involved shooting at Radwick Drive and Owens Avenue in the northeast Las Vegas on Thursday. A robbery suspect was shot and killed. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
LVMPD Looking For Robbery Suspect
The LVMPD Commercial Robbery Section is attempting to identify the pictured suspect who is responsible for committing robberies to businesses in the southern part of the Las Vegas Valley during the month of May 2018. The suspect enters the business, threatens the employee with a firearm and demands money from the register. The employee complies and the suspect flees the business.
North Las Vegas police are investigating a triple shooting that left one man dead
North Las Vegas police are investigating a triple shooting that left one man dead at 2500 block of Ellis St., on Friday, June 8, 2018. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
1 dead in shooting at southwest Las Vegas home
A dispute between roommates led to the fatal shooting of one man in the backyard of their southwest Las Vegas Valley home on Monday, April 23, 2018. (Rio Lacanlale/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bump stock manufacturers under fire
The Justice Department said last month that it had started the process to amend federal firearms regulations to clarify that federal law defines bump stocks as machine guns.
Henderson Police Seek Armed Bank Robbery Suspect
This afternoon a male suspect entered the Bank of America, located at 2638 W. Horizon Ridge Parkway, at about 12:40 p.m. As he entered the bank, he pulled a black mask down to conceal his face.The suspect is described as a late-forties to early-fifties white male adult, approximately 5 foot 8 inches to 5 foot 10 inches tall and weighing approximately 160 to 180 pounds He was last seen wearing a dark colored beanie, a grayish blue plaid shirt, dark jeans and dark colored shoes. His head was shaved on the sides and the top of his hair was dark in color. Vehicle was described as possibly a gray 2012-2014 four door Ford Focus. The license plates were covered with black tape. The suspect is considered armed and dangerous. Do not attempt to contact the suspect but call police immediately. Anyone with information is urged to call the Henderson Police Department at 702-267-4911, to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 702-385-5555.
Sunset Park Homicide (update 2)
LVMPD gives update about suspect in homicide at Sunset Park (Blake Apgar)
Sunset Park Homicide (update)
Update from LVMPD on Sunset Park homicide. Releasing suspect's name (Blake Apgar)
Sunset Park Homicide
Police give details about Sunset Park homicide on Sunday, April 15, 2018. (Blake Apgar)
Security guard thwarts mailbox vandals
A security guard at the Covington at Coronado Ranch apartment complex ended up in the hospital after thwarting a group of mailbox vandals on Monday morning. According to Las Vegas police, about 12:45 a.m. the guard saw a group of people trying to break into mailboxes at the central Las Vegas complex when he confronted them. The group jumped into a vehicle and while trying to flee, struck the guard. The guard was hospitalized with injures that were not life-threatening. The suspects fled and remain at-large.
Las Vegas police looking for robbery suspects
Authorities are looking for three men who police said used a weapon on their victims in a recent string of robberies across the Las Vegas Valley. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Las Vegas police looking for robbery suspects
Authorities are looking for three men who police said used a weapon on their victims in a recent string of robberies across the Las Vegas Valley. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Metro investigates an officer-involved shooting in east Las Vegas
Las Vegas police investigate an officer-involved shooting at Madge Lane and Mabel Road, between Charleston Boulevard and Stewart Avenue, Friday, April 6, 2018, in Las Vegas. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Robbery Surveillance Video
Police are searching for a man suspected of robbing two Las Vegas clothing stores in one week.
Retail Restroom Sexual Assault Suspect
Las Vegas police are asking for help finding a man they said groped a woman in a south Las Vegas Valley restroom. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Calvary Christian Learning Academy, “There was no fair warning.”
Samantha O’Brien, whose three-year-old daughter attended the Calvary Christian Learning Academy daycare, found out Monday night when her daughter’s teacher called about the school closing.
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like