NATION : Pierce Investigation Expanded

From Times Wire Services

An investigation of alleged political favoritism by ex-Housing Secretary Samuel R. Pierce Jr. was expanded today to include the former Reagan Administration official’s dealing with his old law firm.

A special court issued an order expanding the jurisdiction of independent counsel Arlin M. Adams to Pierce’s handling of the multifamily housing co-insurance program as well as his dealings with former aide Lance Wilson and Pierce’s former New York law firm, Battle, Fowler, Jaffin & Kheel.

The expanded jurisdiction gives Adams the authority to investigate whether Pierce, other Department of Housing and Urban Development officials or other persons conspired to defraud the government or committed other crimes, including perjury, in the operation of three housing programs.