Missouri panel formed to investigate Koster

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) _ A panel of state lawmakers has been formed to look into allegations involving lobbyist perks and campaign contributions going to Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster.

Republican House Speaker Tim Jones on Wednesday announced the committee will review allegations reported in a New York Times article against Koster and attorneys general across the country.

The New York Times report addressed claims that Koster, a Democrat, changed policies and negotiated more favorable settlements after receiving campaign contributions and perks from lobbyists.

Koster has said the New York Times report distorts how his office dealt with the companies and cited previous legal actions taken against companies.

Republican state Rep. Jay Barnes of Jefferson City will be chairman of the review committee. Republican Rep. Stanley Cox of Sedalia will serve as vice chairman.

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