Washington (CNN) - Senator John Ensign's office says he's been told he's no longer a target of a federal grand jury investigation into whether he violated the law in an effort to cover up an affair he had with the wife of a former aide.
The two-term Republican admitted in June to an extramarital affair with Cindy Hampton, his onetime campaign treasurer. She is the wife of top aide Doug Hampton.
Ensign and his family were longtime friends with the Hamptons. Doug Hampton has given interviews stating his family has received money and employment offers from Ensign after he and his wife left the Senate staff in April 2008. Ensign admitted his parents gave the Hamptons $96,000 but said the money was a gift, not an effort to suppress word of the affair.
In a statement, Ensign's lawyer, Paul Coggins, said "The Department of Justice has informed us that Senator Ensign is no longer a target of its investigation and that it has no plans to bring any charges against him in this matter. The Federal Election Commission and the Justice Department have reached the right result on the baseless allegations made against him, and we look forward to the Ethics Committee reaching the same conclusion soon."
The Justice Department had no comment.
Jennifer Cooper, an Ensign spokesperson, said:
"Senator Ensign is certainly pleased that the Department of Justice no longer views him as a target in their investigation, and has long-stated that he acted in accordance with the law. Our office and the Senator have been cooperative with this investigation, and it's important that the truth in this matter is finally coming to light. It is the Senator's hope that the Ethics Committee soon follows suit. Senator Ensign looks forward to continuing his hard work on behalf of the people of Nevada."
A statement from Ensign's lawyer in July said: "Each gift was limited to $12,000." "The payments were made as gifts, accepted as gifts and complied with tax rules governing gifts." Under U.S. tax laws, gifts of up to $12,000 are tax-exempt.
According to the statement, Ensign's parents learned of the affair from their son and decided to make the gifts "out of concern for the well-being of long-time family friends during a difficult time."
Before the senator's admission of an affair, he was considered a rising political star and possible Republican presidential candidate for 2012.
–CNN Senior Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash and Justice Producer Terry Frieden contributed to this report