US Federal agents searched the home of Senator Ted Stevens, focusing on records related to his relationship with an Alaska oil field services contractor jailed in a public corruption investigation, a law enforcement official said.
Stevens, 83, has been under a federal investigation for a 2000 renovation project more than doubling the size of his home that was overseen by Bill Allen, a contractor who has pleaded guilty to bribing Alaska state legislators.
Allen is founder of VECO Corp, an oil field services and engineering company that has reaped tens of millions of dollars in federal contracts.
Agents from the FBI and Internal Revenue Service arrived at the senator's home on Monday afternoon, said Dave Heller, FBI assistant special agent. He said he could not comment on the nature of the investigation.
A law enforcement official familiar with the case confirmed the raid on Stevens' home was focused on records related to the ongoing VECO investigation. The official was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke only on condition of anonymity.
An e-mail statement issued by Stevens through his Washington, D.C. spokesman said federal agents had alerted his attorneys that they wanted to search his home.
Stevens, who has been in office since 1968 and is the longest-serving Republican in Senate history, said the interests of justice would be best served if he commented after the investigation.
"I continue to believe this investigation should proceed to its conclusion without any appearance that I have attempted to influence its outcome," Stevens said. "The legal process should be allowed to proceed so that all the facts can be established and the truth determined."
Source: China Daily/agencies