Oklahoma state Capitol news briefs for May 7, 2013

Oklahoma Capitol news briefs for Tuesday, May 7, 2013.
Modified: May 6, 2013 at 10:12 pm •  Published: May 7, 2013
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Islamic group denies allegation

The executive director of the Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said a legislator is abusing his status as a state representative by making unfounded allegations against his organization. Adam Soltani said statements by Rep. John Bennett are “irresponsible at best and libelous at worst.” Bennett, R-Sallisaw, issued a news release Monday on House of Representatives stationery saying that Oklahoma's legislative caucus on counterterrorism has collected evidence that the Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations had ties with an imam who has supported terrorists in the past. Bennett said the imam spoke at the group's annual banquet last month in Oklahoma City, and that the imam was identified as being director of an Islamic center in Virginia that was frequented by several of the 9/11 hijackers.

MICHAEL MCNUTT, CAPITOL BUREAU