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Tax suit raises conflict questions for Cuccinelli

Friday - 3/22/2013, 11:12am  ET

AP Political Writer

RICHMOND, Va. -- A lawsuit against the state of Virginia by a nutritional supplement maker whose stock comprises Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli's total investment portfolio is raising questions about the Republican's potential conflicts of interest.

Henrico-based Star Scientific Inc. sued Virginia's Department of Taxation in July 2011 over a $700,000 tax dispute. A Cuccinelli deputy filed an answer to the complaint the next month. The case has sat dormant since then, which one law professor says is a long time for a case to sit idle.

Cuccinelli's financial disclosure form lists $10,001 to 50,000 worth of Star Scientific stock as his sole investment.

A Cuccinelli spokesman says the office has been trying to get Star Scientific's lawyers to move the case along, and denied the company has gotten preferential treatment. Cuccinelli is running for governor.

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