Judge Orders Huang to Face Questions: Judicial Watch Wins Subpoena

Article excerpt

John Huang, the most-sought-after man in Washington, will be questioned under oath by a public-interest group as early as Tuesday.

A federal judge ordered U.S. marshals yesterday to serve a subpoena on the Democratic Party's top fund-raiser, who dropped out of sight Saturday after being relieved of his duties at the Democratic National Committee.

Mr. Huang, a former executive of Indonesia's multibillion-dollar Lippo Group, has raised about $5 million this year for the Democratic Party. That amount includes $452,000 from Arief Wiriadinata, a landscape architect who recently left Arlington to return to Indonesia, where he is working for Lippo's Sea World park.

Most of the money was contributed after Mr. Wiriadinata and his wife, Soraya, the daughter of a major investor in the Lippo Group, returned to Indonesia. Federal laws allow U.S.-based subsidiaries and workers to contribute money earned in the United States but prohibit political contributions by foreign corporations and most foreign citizens.

The chairman of the nonpartisan public-interest group Judicial Watch, Larry Klayman, told U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth yesterday he feared that Mr. Huang was also about to leave the country. Mr. Klayman said he has scheduled a deposition for Mr. Huang on Tuesday.

Mr. Klayman had been trying to serve a subpoena on Mr. Huang since last week in connection with the group's suit against the Commerce Department, where Mr. Huang was a high-ranking official. Mr. Klayman contends that the much-vaunted trade trips of the Commerce Department were merely "shakedowns" of corporate executives for contributions to the Clinton campaign.

According to documents obtained by Judicial Watch, Mr. Huang used his international trade post at the Commerce Department to help Lippo win several billion-dollar deals in China.

Moving to the DNC as finance co-chairman last year, he persuaded Lippo and U.S. companies with government-negotiated foreign deals to donate millions of dollars to efforts to re-elect President Clinton and restore Democratic control of Congress. …