By KEVIN BEGOS
The attorney for Pittsburgh-area Republican state Sen. Jane Orie blamed a lack over oversight by her former chief of staff and irresponsible behavior by staffers for any illegal campaign work that may have happened in her state-funded office.
In his closing arguments Thursday, defense attorney William Costopoulos also reiterated his contention Orie wouldn’t have clumsily forged documents to cover up such illegal work because of her background as a prosecutor.
Orie is being retried on charges she illegally used her taxpayer-funded staff to do campaign work that benefited her and a sister, state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin, who is not charged. She’s also charged with lying under oath and falsifying defense documents that prompted a mistrial last March.
Prosecutors are next to set to sum up their case.
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