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Dan Alexander @DanAlexander21
, 11 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
(1/9) I was told the commerce department sent this statement to MSNBC regarding the Wilbur Ross story. I asked an official at the commerce department to also send me the statement, but he has not. In any case, there are several issues with it that I think are worth explaining.
(2/9) Commerce is trying to discredit the story by saying it's “anonymously sourced.” There are 4 ex-employees actively pursuing legal action against Ross and his former firm. Those names—David Storper, Joseph Mullin, David Wax and Pamela Wilson—are all in lawsuits. (See below,)
(3/9) Filing lawsuits might be the least-anonymous way to make an accusation. You’re putting your allegations into the public record for posterity. Here's another, for $20M, filed by former vice chairman of WL Ross, Peter Lusk, alleging Ross tried to cut him out of interests.
(4/9) This is the lawsuit between Ross and his former business partner, David Storper, that just settled. Storper alleges, in plain English, that his “carried interest was also stolen from him by Mr. Ross.”…
(5/9) Here's a document from the SEC, in which feds announce they are fining WL Ross $2.3M and alleging firm broke laws that prohibit defrauding and misleading investors. They also note that WL Ross, which did not admit guilt, returned $11.9M to investors.…
(6/9) Commerce also says “The fact remains that no regulator has ever made any of these accusations against the Secretary.” Ross’ rep sent a similar statement to us before we published, and we quoted that in the story, along with some greater context, as you can see below.
(7/9) Here are screenshots from the annual report of Invesco, WL Ross’ parent company, detailing $43 million in regulatory expenses and reimbursements related to its private equity business. Former employees told me that money was connected to WL Ross.
(8/9) Every dollar in the $123M total is counted in documents. I talked to sources, some anonymously, in order to make sure I understood things correctly. Commerce knows how this works, because commerce officials themselves have demanded anonymity in conversations with reporters.
(9/9) Saying story is based on “false rumors, innuendo, and unverifiable claims” is itself misleading. It's based on documents, buttressed by conversations w/ 21 sources. If Commerce wants to point out something specific thing in the story that's inaccurate, I urge them to do so.
Here's the story. Please let me know if you have any questions about sourcing, and I'll do my best to answer them. Thanks for reading.…
And I should add, thanks to @ChaseWithorn for working for days to fact-check every single statement in the article. Checkers are the unsung heroes behind every investigative story.
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