Friday, November 6, 2009
Louisiana State investigators take dozens of computers and records from ACORN office on Canal Street.
Investigators in khaki pants and polo shirts loaded several dozen computers and other electronic items into an SUV. They are also carrying records out of the building on handcarts.
The large office building sits at the corner of Dorgenois and Canal. ACORN staffers were given no notice that a search would be conducted today, Herring said.
"They have been extremely cooperative," she said.
Early last month, Caldwell's office issued subpoenas for records from ACORN's New Orleans office, where the organization -- now moving its national headquarters to Washington -- has long been based.
Today's search is an outgrowth of those subpoenas, which stemmed from an investigation by Caldwell's office into the embezellement of ACORN funds by Dale Rathke, a brother of the organization's founder, Wade Rathke, Herring said.
In a statement, ACORN's attorney Pamela Marple said the group was told the raid was ordered because of reports that workers loyal to Beth Butler, the recently fired head of ACORN's Louisiana branch, had been taking computer data and other items out of the office.