Campaign Finance Key Player:
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For Pauline Kanchanalak, rubbing elbows with the president has been part of a successful career in Washington as a business executive and Democratic Party activist.
Kanchanalak had regular access to the White House, which recommended her for a spot on a trade policy advisory committee that requires a security clearance and U.S. citizenship. Kanchanalak is a legal resident and never sent in her application.
In June 1996, Kanchanalak's friend John Huang arranged for her to attend a White House coffee with Clinton, the same day she and her sister-in-law, Duangnet "Georgie" Kronenberg, contributed $135,000 to the party. Kanchanalak also invited three top officials of a huge Sino-Thai conglomerate, Charoen Pokphand Group, or CP, and two executives of the U.S.-Thailand Business Council as her guests.
In July 1998, Kanchanalak and Kronenberg became the sixth and seventh people indicted by the Justice Department's campaign finance task force, charged with funneling at least $679,000 in foreign contributions to the Democratic National Committee and other U.S. political committees.
Kanchanalak returned to Washington from Bangkok, where she had been living for more than a year, to plead not guilty to the charges against her.
Last updated July 30, 1998
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