Updated 05/03/2012 08:24 PM
Friend of heiress Bunny Mellon takes stand in Edwards' trial
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GREENSBORO — Prosecutors called on a personal friend of heiress Bunny Mellon and a former press secretary for John Edwards as the campaign finance trial nears the end of its of second week of testimony.
After former campaign staffers testified Thursday morning, the focused shifted to whether or not John Edwards was involved in getting any of the campaign donations.
Bryan Huffman testified about acting as a middleman in transferring funds from Bunny Mellon and former aide Andrew Young. Huffman said Mellon loved Edwards and wanted to support his presidential run. Mellon gave the maximum donation of $2,300.
According to Huffman a few months later, Young called Hunter and requested sums ranging between $500,000 and $600,000. Hunter's financial adviser would not approve and the checks were made out to Huffman's furniture, whereupon Huffman would endorse the checks over to the Youngs.
Huffman testified that Young told him the donations were legal, since they were out of the realm of the campaign. Huffman said that Mellon was unaware that the money was used for Hunter.
“The question is whether or not John Edwards knew what his close confidant Andrew Young was doing. John Edwards so far has been consistent in his statements that have come out that he was unaware that she was being asked to give money to the foundation,” said former federal prosecutor Kieran Shanahan.
Edwards' former traveling press secretary Mark Kornblau pointed out that the team had an opportunity to respond to The National Enquirer and give a statement in a second story and the truth about the affair.
Huffman is expected to finish his testimony Friday.