July 17, 2002
E-mails Detail Effort to Cover Bare-breasted Statue
Daily News, New York

The Justice Department apparently didn't tell the whole truth when it denied that new curtains were meant to hide a bare-breasted statue that loomed over Attorney General John Ashcroft's news conferences.

The department said the blue curtains provide a better background for cameras - but internal memos obtained by the New York Daily News make it clear the $8,650 worth of drapery was part of a Department of Justice coverup.

In a Nov. 29, 2001, e-mail, an aide was instructed to "obtain three bids for the permanent drape hiding the statues," "Spirit of Justice" and her male companion, "Majesty of Law."

A later e-mail said, "The pipe (frame) and drape to hide the statues will be installed in the Great Hall tomorrow."