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Housing Secretary Settles Lawsuit With Ex-Mistress Cisneros To Pay $49,000; Federal Probe Continues

Sat., May 20, 1995

Housing Secretary Henry Cisneros agreed to pay his former mistress $49,000 Friday to settle the 1994 lawsuit that prompted an independent counsel investigation into false statements he made to the FBI.

In District Court in Lubbock, Texas, lawyers for Cisneros and Linda Medlar filed papers to dismiss the case. Cisneros agreed to a one-time payment, and Medlar agreed to make no further claims against him.

Settlement of the Texas suit has no bearing on the independent counsel investigation pending against Cisneros for making false statements to the FBI about the size of payments he had made to Medlar between 1990 and 1993. A three-judge federal panel has not yet named the counsel.

Medlar, jobless and impoverished in Lubbock, filed suit on July 29, 1994 charging Cisneros breached an “oral contract” he made with her in 1990, at the end of their three-year love affair. Medlar said Cisneros agreed to pay her $4,000 per month until she got a job or until her daughter graduated from college - $256,000 in all.

Cisneros’s lawyers late last year moved for dismissal on grounds there was no contract, but the motion was denied in late April. The settlement agreement was concluded late last week, said Floyd Holder, Medlar’s lawyer.

Details of the affair, begun in 1987 when Cisneros was mayor of San Antonio and Medlar was a political fund-raiser, have been well-known for years, but the Lubbock case marked the first public mention of Cisneros’ payments. In all, Cisneros gave Medlar $213,000, stopping in mid-1993 after he became Secretary of Housing and Urban Development: “I tried to be helpful,” Cisneros said.

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