CHARLESTON, W. Va. (WOWK) – The focus of the investigation is the Greenbrier Resort and the annual “Military Tribute at the Greenbrier” PGA golf tournament, run by an organization known as the “Old White Charities.”
The governor and state Department of Commerce were served with a federal subpoena. The subpoena also names Justice’s two children, and various other executives of the Greenbrier businesses, owned by the Justice family. The governor says he’s done nothing wrong.
“We want to be respectful to those, respect the process. Tell them and give them anything and everything they ever want. But at the same time, when you’re in this position, anybody can blow a whistle, and anybody can say anything they want and cast a stone. It’s tough,” said Gov. Jim Justice, (R) West Virginia.
The investigation dates back to 2014 before Justice was elected governor, but it also includes his time in office. With over 100 companies in his portfolio, Democrats worried the Governor might have conflicts of interest.
“Well, unfortunately, we’ve had these concerns about the governor’s business ties and his business dealings with the state for a long time. And we’ve asked him to put his businesses into a blind trust, he hasn’t done so. So we’ve had these concerns for a long time,” said Del. Andrew Robinson, (D) Kanawha.
Before he became governor, the state did spend money supporting the Greenbrier Classic as a way to promote West Virginia business and tourism.
“And along the way, when I was running for office, not in office yet, but I turned down $1,750,000 sponsorship from the state because I didn’t think it was right. And naturally when I came into office I’ve not taken a dime,” said Gov. Jim Justice, (R-West Virginia).
The investigation is being led by the Office of Public Integrity, at the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, DC. Legal experts tell us if that office is involved, it’s a very serious matter.
While subpoenas have been issued and grand jury testimony is underway, it’s important to note at this point, that no one – not the governor nor anyone else – has been accused of any wrongdoing, or has been charged with a crime.