The lawyer selected to be the next FBI director by President Donald Trump, Christopher Wray, billed New Jersey taxpayers more than $2 million for secretly helping Gov. Chris Christie avoid prosecution for his role in the Bridgegate scandal.
Wray was hired as Christie’s personal attorney no charges leveled against the Republican governor, despite three of his top aides being found or pleading guilty for various roles in the conspiracy to shut down the George Washington Bridge, the busiest span in the world.
The scheme was an act of retaliation against a Democratic mayor who refused to support the Republican governor for a second term in 2013.
Trump picked Wray after his firm, King & Spalding LLP, billed New Jersey taxpayers more than $2.1 million for legal services representing Christie as his personal attorney, although his employment was never publicly disclosed before and during the Bridgegate trial.
Wray also reportedly represented an American energy executive who was the subject of a Russian criminal investigation in 2006, but Wray deleted links to Russia from his career profile before he was tapped for one of the nation’s top law enforcement jobs.
Another lawyer, Randy Mastro, of Gibson Dunn, was paid more than $11 million as defense attorney for the governor’s office and author of a report whitewashing Christie’s involvement in the scandal.
Christie has maintained his innocence in the lane-closing scandal, but he never explained under oath how the conspiracy started and flourished within his administration.
Bills provided to journalists from the state attorney general’s office are heavily redacted, so it is unclear what Wray and his firm did for Christie.
The public did not know the governor had a second lawyer on the case until nearly two years after his hiring, when a spokesperson revealed that the cellphone used by the governor during the incident was in Wray’s possession because former Christie aides sought to subpoena the device for their defense case.
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