Starr Under Spotlight

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GREENVILLE, S.C.: Who investigates the investigator? Answer: Rene Josey, a U.S. attorney who will be looking into allegations that Ken Starr concealed perjury back in the days when he defended General Motors. The charge: In a lawsuit filed by relatives of truck-fire victims, a GM engineer named Edward Ivey denied showing a study about truck fires he had prepared to anyone -- and lied about it 13 times on the witness stand, with Starr's knowledge. That's according to lawyer J. Kendall Few, who represented one of the families in that suit. To hear Few tell it, Starr "has taken active, energetic and successful steps to conceal and cover up such perjury." Few's decision to make this charge just now is not explained.

Special Report And Starr's side? The independent counsel is not talking about it yet. What we do know is that evidence turned up in 1993 shows that GM's legal staff knew in 1981 that Ivey had circulated his analysis to a number of engineers. We also know Starr bitterly contested the release of a 1981 document from his interview with Ivey, citing attorney-client privelege. Now Josey may well find that Starr's work was, as a GM spokesman said, "proper in every respect." But for the moment, Starr is caught up in an ironic twist of fate: While he chases the President for supposedly suborning perjury in a civil lawsuit, identical charges are snapping at his own heels.