US Treasury's inspector general clears plane trip

By MARTIN CRUTSINGERMarketsAssociated Press

The Treasury Department's office of the inspector general says a trip that a top Treasury official took on a plane owned by a wealthy hedge fund operator did not violate applicable ethics laws.

Ed Miller, chief of staff for Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, flew with Nelson Peltz, a founding partner in Trian Fund Management, on a trip in March from Washington to Palm Beach, Fla., after Miller got clearance from the department's ethics lawyer that the offer was coming from a friend and not someone with business before the department.

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Rich Delmar, counsel to the inspector general at Treasury, said Friday that while accepting the flight was not a violation of law, it might have been more prudent to turn the offer down to avoid the appearance of conflict.