Well-Known Lobbying Group Worked for Star Scientific Inc.

Multiple sources told News4’s I-Team that powerhouse federal lobbying group Parry, Romani, Deconcini and Symms has concluded its work on behalf of Star Scientific Inc., the Virginia-based company at the center of the growing scandal engulfing Gov. Robert McDonnell (R).

Star Scientific, led by chief executive officer Jonnie Williams, spent more than $200,000 to lobby Congress and federal agencies since January 2011, according to lobbying disclosure documents reviewed by MacFarlane.

Parry, Romani, Deconcini and Symms, the company’s sole publicly-listed lobbying representative, is a well-known lobbying force in Washington, D.C., headquartered near the US Senate and featuring former U.S. Sen. Steve Symms (R-Idaho).

Lobbying records show the firm advocated on Star Scientific’s behalf over the issue of federal regulations of dietary supplements, a major product in Williams and his company’s portfolio.

The lobbying firm’s filings with the U.S. Senate say the group monitored “development of regulations by the FDA that overly restrict the dietary supplement industry” on Star Scientific’s behalf.

A Star Scientific spokesperson said, “To best of our knowledge no one at the FBI has reached out to our lobbying firm.”

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