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Judge tosses campaign finance case against Tom Horne

PHOENIX -- An administrative law judge has thrown out a civil complaint accusing Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne of illegally coordinating his 2010 election campaign with a separate group supposedly operating independently.

Tuesday's ruling by Judge Tammy L. Eigenheer said the Arizona Secretary of State's office made a mistake when it referred the case to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office. The case by law should instead have been sent to Horne's office first, since he's the state's chief legal officer.

The ruling also dismissed civil cases against Horne confidant Kathleen Winn and the group she led. Winn attorney Timothy La Sota could not be reached after hours Tuesday.

Horne's spokeswoman said he was pleased and was reviewing the ruling.

A spokesman for county attorney Bill Montgomery says he plans an appeal.

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