Wildstein's Attorney: Christie Knew Of 'Bridgegate' Closures - KMSP-TV

Wildstein's Attorney: Christie Knew Of 'Bridgegate' Closures

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PHILADELPHIA -

There was breaking news late Friday afternoon out of New Jersey in the scandal engulfing Gov. Chris Christie's administration.

"Bridgegate" refers to the deliberate closing of traffic lanes leading to the George Washington Bridge from fort lee- an apparent political dirty trick- ordered by the governor's deputy chief of staff.

Now comes a new allegation that Christie knew about the lane closures "as they happened."

FOX 29's Bruce Gordon is live in the newsroom as details are starting to filter in.

Christie has said repeatedly he did not know about the September lane closures that brought traffic troubles to the town of Fort Lee, had nothing to do with their planning or implementation.

Late Friday afternoon, the attorney representing Christie's appointee to the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey – the man who actually closed the lanes – says the governor did know.

David Wildstein pleaded the fifth when asked about his role in the scandal earlier this month.

Various newspapers have now obtained a letter from Wildstein's attorney, Alan Zegas in which Zegas asks the port authority to reconsider its decision not to pay Wildstein's legal bills.

In that letter, Zegas writes: "Evidence exists (as well) tying Mr. Christie to having knowledge of the lane closures, during the period when the lanes were closed, contrary to what the governor stated publicly, in a two hour press conference" last month.

During an appearance earlier this month before the Assembly's transportation committee, Zegas made clear if his client got protection from prosecution, he would have lots of interesting things to say.

This letter suggests that Wildstein could do great damage to the Republican governor. Again, this is just an allegation.

Christie's administration released the following statement late Friday afternoon:

"Mr. Wildstein's lawyer confirms what the Governor has said all along - he had absolutely no prior knowledge of the lane closures before they happened and whatever Mr. Wildstein's motivations were for closing them to begin with. As the Governor said in a December 13th press conference, he only first learned lanes were closed when it was reported by the press and as he said in his January 9th press conference, had no indication that this was anything other than a traffic study until he read otherwise the morning of January 8th. The Governor denies Mr. Wildstein's lawyer's other assertions."

As for the leaders of the leaders of the committee investigating the scandal, co-chairs Assemblyman John Wisniewski (D-Middlesex) and Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen), they issued a statement that said, "We have read the letter from Mr. Wildstein's attorney and will consider it as our investigation moves forward."

A new batch of subpoenaed documents is due Monday to the committee investigating this bizarre story, Gordon reported.

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