Las Cruces Businessman Denies Wrongdoing In Judicial Probe

Las Cruces – A Las Cruces businessman entangled in a pay-to-play scandal involving judicial appointments by former Gov. Bill Richardson says he did nothing wrong.

Edgar Lopez spoke to the Albuquerque Journal for a story published Sunday. He told the paper that allegations that he collected cash from lawyers to be funneled to Richardson's campaigns if they wanted to be appointed to judgeships were "absurd."

An incident report detailing a bribery investigation into District Judge Michael Murphy of Las Cruces says Murphy told another lawyer about the 'pay-to-play' scheme. Murphy pleaded not guilty on Friday to felony bribery charges in the ongoing investigation.

Lopez has not been charged with a crime. Richardson has denied that campaign contributions influenced his judicial appointments and called the allegation "outrageous and defamatory."


Information from: Albuquerque Journal,

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.