Shoot The Bunny?????
Weeks before he was indicted, John Edwards reportedly asked for millions of dollars from Rachel "Bunny" Mellon, a reclusive banking heiress whose financial support of the former Democratic candidate is the subject of the criminal case against him.
A source with knowledge of the request confirms to ABC News that the request was in the "millions of dollars" but declined to say why Edwards asked for the money. A lawyer for Mellon, who is expected to a key witness at Edwards' criminal trial, declined to comment, as did a member of Edwards' legal team.
The disclosure comes just weeks after Edwards was indicted on charges he broke campaign finance laws in attempting to cover up an affair with Rielle Hunter, a former staffer to his 2008 presidential bid who later gave birth to his child.
According to the indictment, Mellon allegedly gave Edwards at least $725,000, which later went toward hiding Hunter during her pregnancy. Prosecutors say the cash should count as a campaign donation since hiding the affair was beneficial to Edwards' presidential bid.
It's unclear if Mellon has continued to support Edwards, but even if she did, the money given to him now wouldn't count as a donation since he's no longer a political candidate. But it's sure to raise eyebrows as Mellon will likely to be called to testify in the criminal case against Edwards.
Shortly before he was indicted, Edwards lunched with Mellon at her estate in Virginia—though a Mellon lawyer insisted the two did not talk about his looming criminal indictment.
Edwards has pled not guilty to the chargesâ€”insisting the cash he received from Mellon and another donor, Fred Baron, were gifts. ABC notes that as a condition of his bail he has agreed not to have any contact with Mellon.
News & Politics