NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Thursday, August 19th 2004
BY RALPH R. ORTEGA, ALISON GENDAR and NANCY DILLON DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS With Ellen Tumposky, Matthew Kalman and Ellen Locker
THE MYSTERY MAN who claims to be Golan Cipel's ex-lover said yesterday that not only is the handsome Israeli gay - he's also still in love with Gov. Jim McGreevey.
"Golan says he's not gay? He could have fooled me," Dr. David Miller of Livingston, N.J., told the Daily News yesterday, as he claimed that he had a gay affair with the ex-McGreevey aide.
"We love each other. Is that a crime? We're lovers," said Miller, 51, an openly gay man and divorced father of two.
In a manic, disjointed interview, Miller said that Cipel had made a pillow-talk confession: He still carries a torch for McGreevey.
"Cipel never complained about the governor. They were in love," Miller said outside his home.
Miller also claimed to reporters that he is a CIA operative who takes pills doled out by the intelligence agency to make his skin darker so he can infiltrate unnamed groups.
He offered no mementos, letters or photos as proof of his relationship with Cipel.
He called Cipel a "gold digger" and said he believes the Israeli national was egged on by McGreevey's enemies to claim the governor sexually assaulted him.
The Daily News reported yesterday that an unidentified college professor had reported his affair to the governor's aides.
If true, Miller could wreck Cipel's claims of being a straight man victimized by McGreevey's predatory advances.
Miller - who insisted on speaking Spanish because, he said, he hates the United States - told reporters he met Cipel in Israel through family friends and that he still had a soft spot for him.
"Despite his problems, I'm going to go visit him," said Miller, shirtless and wearing purple shorts.
Cipel, who fled the spotlight for his family's home outside Tel Aviv, denied these latest stories about his sex life. "I never had any relationship with any man, so I don't know what they want from me," Cipel told a close friend yesterday who spoke to The News.
Cipel called Miller's tale "ridiculous and laughable," and said it was now open season on him - "anyone can get up now and claim he had an affair."
A statement from Cipel's media consultant characterized the story as "a blatant lie and manipulation," and part of the governor's ongoing smear campaign.
Miller, a doctor and adjunct professor at Montclair State University, said he had already given a deposition in the federal probe into McGreevey's charges that Cipel tried to blackmail him by claiming sexual harassment.
He said Cipel fled the country "because he was scared when he learned there was a federal investigation into extortion."
Sources told The News that the governor's office took Miller's allegation seriously and was having private investigators check it out.
Yesterday, McGreevey's spokesman Micah Rasmussen denied that. "We couldn't care less if Cipel has ex-boyfriends," Rasmussen said.
Sources said Miller had wanted to get his tale to the governor, and so three days ago contacted New Jersey lawyer Philip Vinick.
"It was a strange call. . . . I know nothing about him, or the truth of what he said," Vinick said.
Miller's own story is reminiscent of McGreevey's coming-out tale. The doctor said he was a happily married man with two children, when, at age 38, he acknowledged he was gay.
"One hundred thousand dollars worth of therapy later and I still don't understand," Miller said.