Obama's information chief Vivek Kundra is a petty thief

. 3/19/09

Vivek Kundra, the Obama administration's chief information officer pleaded guilty to a petty theft charge 13 years ago, the White House confirmed on Tuesday.

White House spokesman Nick Shapiro said the revelation only indicates that Kundra "committed a youthful indiscretion".

However, he refused to answer whether the administration was aware of the case when vetting Kundra for the new position created by President Barack Obama.

Court records show that Kundra, 34, pleaded guilty to a theft of less than 300 U.S. dollars when he was studying at the University of Maryland in 1996.

He received supervised probation and was also fined 500 dollars.

The new revelation followed last week's anti-corruption raid by the FBI on Washington municipal technology office, where Kundra had been the chief officer until recently.

He was put on a leave by the White house after that and only returned to his post after being cleared of any involvement of the FBI case on Tuesday.

But the latest revelation once again raises questions about the White House vetting process, which has failed to expose problems that have torpedoed several nominees.

Among them was former Senator Tom Daschle, who withdrew his nomination to be secretary of health after it was learned he owed 146,000 dollars in unpaid taxes and penalties.

Source: Xinhua

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