A grand jury has begun investigation into the failed Obama green-energy company, Solyndra.
Solyndra is one of the biggest crony capitalist deals that Obama has conducted since becoming president. The cronyism started in the months prior to the approval of the Solyndra loan by the Department of Energy in March of 2009, when billionaire and Obama bundler, George Kaiser, held numerous meetings with the White House about the pending loan.
George Kaiser holds the biggest stake in the now defunct Solyndra.
White House logs revealed that Solyndra executives and investors held four separate visits the week before the company received its cut of your stimulus cash. Those meetings all took place while a White House budget analyst warned in an email that, “this deal is not ready for prime time.”
On May 26, 2010, Obama visited Solyndra, boasted about the loan and said, “the true engine of economic growth will always be companies like Solyndra.” He praised Solyndra as a Recovery Act (stimulus) success story.
On September 6, 2011, Solyndra filed for bankruptcy. The immediate result was the layoff of 1,100 workers.
The scandal took another turn when, on September 8, 2011, the FBI raided Solyndra’s headquarters.
Obama was so impressed with the failed solar company that the administration wanted to give it another $469 million on top of the $535 million to make it an even billion dollars in taxpayer cash.
The Washington Times reported:
A grand jury has begun investigating Solyndra LLC, the failed California solar-panel maker that lost more than a half-billion dollars in federal loans, according to law-firm billing records.
Weeks after Solyndra filed for bankruptcy in September, a judge allowed the company to hire a law firm to represent it in what court records at the time called a “federal criminal investigation.”
Now the firm, K&L Gates, has filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware a detailed, hour-by-hour account of how attorneys have been spending their time. Most of their efforts have focused on what the firm called the U.S. attorney’s office and Department of Justice investigation of Solyndra.
In an 18-page invoice from the law firm dated Dec. 9, the words “grand jury” appear numerous times: “Prepare response to grand jury subpoena,” one entry reads. Another said, “Review and prepare documents to respond to grand jury subpoena.”
The invoices also point to a meeting on Oct. 14 between K&L Gates attorney Jeffrey L. Bornstein, a former federal prosecutor in San Francisco, and an assistant U.S. attorney identified in the billing records only as “J. Nedrow.”
Jeffrey Nedrow is an assistant U.S. attorney for the Northern District of California, which is the same office overseeing the Solyndra investigation. Mr. Nedrow was a prosecutor in the criminal trial against former San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds.
Yet another entry refers to a telephone call with “AUSA” – an abbreviation in legal circles that refers to assistant U.S. attorney – “regarding grand jury subpoena.”
The formation of an investigative grand jury would mark a significant development in the criminal investigation into Solyndra, which saw its offices raided by the FBI within days of its bankruptcy filing in September.
“The subpoenas would be just the tip of the iceberg,” said Laurie Levenson, a former federal prosecutor and now a law professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. “The first things to happen in grand juries are subpoenas to collect every possible document you can.”
Federal authorities aren’t commenting on the probe. Jack Gillund, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office, declined to comment Tuesday when asked about a grand jury.
In an email Tuesday, Mr. Bornstein said, “Solyndra is continuing to cooperate with the United States Attorney’s Office in connection with its investigation.”
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CRONY CAPITALISM – IRS Gave Now Bankrupt Solyndra Special Tax Break
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Obama Ignored Legal Warnings On Solyndra Loan Guarantee
Solyndra Emails Show Obama Was Poised To Approve Second Loan For $469 Million
Obama Warned Not To Visit Solyndra By Senior Officials, Didn’t Want To Embarrass Him Later
WTF – Obama Says He Doesn’t Regret Loan To Solyndra, Calls It a “Good Bet”
FBI Probing Solyndra For Possible Fraud
SOLARGATE UPDATE: Solyndra Said To Have Violated Terms Of Its U.S. Loan
Concerns About Solyndra Loan Progarm Were Raised Directly To Obama During White House Meetings
It Just Got Better… Solyndra Bankruptcy Docs List California Democratic Party As Creditor
Read my Washington Times Communities Column: Obama’s Solyndra Fiasco
For the latest on the Solyndra scandal, click here.