It's not the crime, it's the cover-up, as the saying goes. In the case of former University of Virginia climate scientist Michael Mann and his supporters, it may be both.
Not only did Mann participate in perhaps the greatest scam of modern times, but he may have also have fraudulently used taxpayer funds to do so.
At least Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli thinks so, and has been diligently trying to obtain from U.Va. documents and e-mails related to Mann's work there. Mann reportedly received around $500,000 from taxpayer-funded grants from the university for research there from 1999 to 2005.'
Cuccinelli is alleging a possible violation of a 2002 statute, the Virginia Fraud Against Taxpayers Act. The AG has said that he wants the documents, including grant applications and e-mails exchanged between Mann and 39 other scientists and university staffers, to help determine whether Mann committed fraud by knowingly manipulating data as he sought the taxpayer-funded grants for his research.
Read more: Yes, Virginia, A Climate Cover-Up