Clinton settles Jones sex case

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The Independent Online
PRESIDENT BILL Clinton scored a landmark victory in his fight against impeachment last night, settling the lawsuit which sparked off the investigation into his sexual misdoings.

In a deal that will cost the President $850,000, he finally settled a sexual harassment suit brought by Paula Jones, a former Arkansas state employee. He did not apologise, as Ms Jones had demanded. The settlement is less than Ms Jones had wanted, and she will see little or none of the money as she has huge legal debts from the case. Ms Jones alleged that Mr Clinton had exposed himself to her in a hotel room and asked for sex, when he was Governor of Arkansas. She claimed she had been the victim of sexual harassment, but a judge threw out the case earlier this year. She had appealed against the judgment.

Lawyers working for Ms Jones began collecting evidence about Mr Clinton's other sexual adventures, and one of the people they tracked down was Ms Lewinsky.

Most of the charges in the impeachment dossier stem from the Paula Jones lawsuit. When impeachment hearings start next week, Mr Clinton's lawyers can claim that this case is resolved.

But Kenneth Starr, the independent prosecutor investigating Mr Clinton yesterday sent another batch of documents to Congress, this time covering an allegation of sexual misconduct brought by former White House volunteer Kathleen Willey.

Ms Willey alleges the President made a sexual advance to her in the White House in 1993, and that she was intimidated after she made the allegations.

Mr Starr sent the documents so that Congress can decide whether there is enough evidence to add the claims of Ms Willey to those already under investigation in the Monica Lewinsky affair. Mr Starr also won a new indictment against Webster Hubbell, a friend of Mr Clinton and former official in the Justice department. Mr Hubbell was charged with lying and engaging in fraud during investigations into the original Whitewater allegations. Mr Hubbell has served time in prison for defrauding his clients.

Mr Hubbell worked for the Rose law firm in Arkansas, where Hillary Rodham Clinton also practised.

There has been speculation that after Mr Starr's referral of charges against the President, criminal indictments of others who were allegedly involved in White House misdoings - perhaps including the First Lady - may be brought.