Last month, the NY Times questioned City Comptroller John Liu's fundraising after "[c]anvassing...nearly 100 homes and workplaces of donors listed on Mr. Liu’s campaign finance reports... Some two dozen irregularities were uncovered, including instances in which people listed as having given to Mr. Liu say they never gave, say a boss or other Liu supporter gave for them, or could not be found altogether." Now, the federal authorities are taking a looking at Liu's fundraising.

According to the Times, "Grand jury subpoenas issued last week in the inquiry followed a report in The New York Times last month detailing a number of fund-raising improprieties... It is unclear whether the current inquiry is related to an investigation begun by Manhattan federal prosecutors and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in late 2009. That investigation, which had not previously been made public, focused on whether foreign money flowed into Mr. Liu’s 2009 campaign for comptroller, two people with knowledge of the inquiry said." The Times also brought up one example:

For example, Mr. Liu’s campaign records show that 11 employees of Farewell International, a seafood company in Brooklyn, each gave him $800 earlier this year.

But on Monday, an official at the company, who identified himself as Peter Zhang, said in a telephone interview that the company only had three employees and that he was puzzled by the information contained in Mr. Liu’s campaign report.

“They put other peoples’ names under our company,” Mr. Zhang said. “We don’t know why.”

The Post, which has been critical of Liu, reminds readers that small donations are also important to examine: "Under the rules, for every individual donation of $175 or less a candidate receives, the board gives another six times the amount."

Liu told the Times, "I am confident that my fund-raising efforts were proper at all times." Liu, whose Comptroller victory was noteworthy for it being the highest office an Asian had been elected to NYC office, hired former state Attorney General Robert Abrams to go through his financial records and donor lists. He has also reached out to a criminal lawyer.