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For Immediate Release
March 19, 2004
Contact: Kelly Huff
Bob Biersack
Ian Stirton
George Smaragdis
COMPLIANCE CASE MADE PUBLIC
WASHINGTON -- The Federal Election Commission has recently made public its final action on one matter previously under review (MUR). This release contains only disposition information.
 
1. MUR 5281  
     
  RESPONDENTS: (a) American Muslim Council

(b) Palestine Media Watch

(c) Hilliard for Congress Campaign, Elvira W. Williams, treasurer

(d) www.pmwatch.org

(e) www.voteHilliard.org

  COMPLAINANTS: John J. Vecchione
  SUBJECT: Corporate contributions; disclaimer; failure to report independent expenditure
  DISPOSITION: (a) Reason to believe, but took no further action*

[re: corporate contributions; disclaimer]

Sent admonishment letter.

(b) Reason to believe, but took no further action*

[re: corporate contributions; disclaimer]

No reason to believe*

[re: failure to report independent expenditure]

Sent admonishment letter.

The complaint alleged that the American Muslim Council made corporate contributions in the form of express advocacy communications or solicitations to the general public on behalf of Hilliard for Congress. The complaint further alleged the Palestine Media Watch made corporate contributions or expenditures through the establishment and operation of websites that contained express advocacy communications or solicitations to the general public on behalf of Hilliard.

The complaint also alleged that the required disclaimer statement was not disclosed on the communications and the expenditures for these communications were not reported. The Commission found reason to believe that violations occurred but decided to use their prosecutorial discretion and take no further action.

(c) No reason to believe*

[re: a violation of any provision of the Act or regulations in this matter]

(d-e) Took no action*

  DOCUMENTS ON PUBLIC RECORD: Documents from this matter are available from the Commissionís web site at fec.gov by entering 5281 under case number. They are also available in the FECs Public Records Office at 999 E St. NW in Washington.

*There are four administrative stages to the FEC enforcement process:

1. Receipt of proper complaint 3. "Probable cause" stage
2. "Reason to believe" stage 4. Conciliation stage

It requires the votes of at least four of the six Commissioners to take any action. The FEC can close a case at any point after reviewing a complaint. If a violation is found and conciliation cannot be reached, then the FEC can institute a civil court action against a respondent.

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