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Perry Used Plane of Donor Facing Probe

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry has made presidential campaign trips on a jet owned by a contributor who is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission and Texas regulators, according to published media reports.

Perry flew last weekend on a jet belonging to Brian D. Pardo, the CEO of life settlement company Life Partners Holdings (LPHI - Get Report), according to a report by The Wall Street Journal that cited a Perry campaign aide and flight records obtained through Flightwise.com.

The plane also carried the governor's relatives from Texas to Charleston, S.C. on Aug. 13, the day Perry officially launched his presidential campaign, the report added.

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Pardo donated $50,000 to Perry's Texas campaign fund last year, the report said.

Under federal election laws, it's legal for candidates to fly on supporters' or corporations' airplanes as long as the candidates reimburse the planes' owners, the report noted.

Pardo and Life Partners are being investigated by the SEC about what the company knew and disclosed to its investors about the life expectancies of people whose insurance policies Life Partners had purchased.

Texas regulators sued Pardo and the company at the end of July in an effort to make them comply with subpoenas issued as part of an investigation, the Journal report noted.

Life Partners operates in the controversial life settlement business, buying up life insurance policies of individuals and then selling them to investors.

A representative for the Perry campaign declined to say how the candidate came to use Pardo's plane but said the campaign paid the owner in accordance with election laws, the report said.

Mr. Pardo confirmed that the governor used his plane twice and said he had been reimbursed, the report added.

This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.

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