Indiana mayor spends $41K from campaign for defense lawyers

Updated 2/1/2018 6:06 PM

PORTAGE, Ind. -- A northwestern Indiana mayor has reported paying $41,000 from campaign contributions to attorneys defending him against federal bribery charges.

The campaign spending reports show Republican Portage Mayor James Snyder paid the money during 2017 following his federal indictment in late 2016.

Snyder tells The (Northwest Indiana) Times that his defense costs pale in comparison to what the federal government is spending to prosecute him.

Snyder is charged with accepting money in exchange for towing contracts. Snyder denies any wrongdoing and has a trial scheduled to begin in June.

The payments went to Thomas Kirsch II, who became northern Indiana's U.S. attorney last year, and Indianapolis lawyer Jackie Bennett Jr., who was a top deputy to Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr during the 1990s investigation of President Bill Clinton.

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