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For Immediate Release
After a thorough review of the information provided by MTAN, as well as supplemental information provided by an attorney general investigator, Secretary Gwadosky issued a decision on remand today that concludes the information presented strongly suggests that Mr. Powell is not the person he purported to be, as he fraudulently used the identity of another.
Secretary Gwadosky's decision further concluded that the information provided was not sufficient to determine that the individual claiming to be James Powell was a resident of Maine. Therefore, Mr. Powell was ineligible to circulate a petition through the citizen initiative process and the signatures he collected remain invalid.
Since this matter had been appealed, a court order was necessary to bring the matter back before the Secretary of State for review. The Court issued the remand by agreement of the parties to allow the additional information to be provided to the Secretary of State. The Secretary of State's Office was also allowed to supplement its information in response. The court order finally stated that if the Secretary of State's decision remained the same, the petitioner's appeal would proceed before the Court.
The matter will now be heard before a Maine Superior
Court Justice who will receive legal briefs and hear arguments from
both parties before issuing a decision on or before March 21, 2002.