GOP Donor Charged in Ohio
TOLEDO -- A coin dealer and major GOP donor at the center of a scandal in Ohio state government was charged Thursday with illegally funneling $45,400 in contributions to President Bush's reelection bid.
Tom Noe was accused in a federal indictment of giving money to 24 friends and associates, who then made the campaign contributions in their own names. In that way, he skirted the $2,000 limit on individual contributions, prosecutors said.
Calls to the White House and Noe's attorneys were not immediately returned.
Noe also is under investigation over an ill-fated $50 million investment in rare coins he managed for the state workers' compensation fund. Noe has acknowledged that up to $13 million is missing, and Ohio's attorney general has accused him of stealing as much as $6 million but has filed no charges.
The coin dealer contributed more than $105,000 to Republicans, including Bush and Gov. Bob Taft, in the last campaign. The Republican National Committee announced in June that Bush was returning $4,000.