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Wireless firm’s creditors demand details of White House meeting


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Washington Times:

Creditors of the bankrupt wireless company Open Range Communications, which closed in October owing more than $70 million in unpaid federal loans, say the Justice Department is refusing to turn over records as part of a court-ordered investigation, including details from a meeting between two top Obama administration officials and the White House.

The meeting involved the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Julius Genachowski, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Thomas J. Vilsack and unnamed representatives from the office of the president, according to a creditors committee.

“The committee believes other responsive communications may exist relating to this matter in the records of the FCC Chairman, the office of the USDA Secretary and the Office of the President,” creditors’ attorneys wrote in a bankruptcy court filing.

The filing, which doesn’t state when the meeting occurred, for the first time suggests White House participation in discussions about Open Range before the company’s collapse. Open Range won a $267 million USDA loan guarantee in the waning days of the George W. Bush administration.

With Republicans scrutinizing failed federal loans to solar-panel maker Solyndra LLC last year, House Democrats called for a congressional probe into Open Range, too.snip
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