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Washington Post apologizes for plagiarism

PHOENIX (Reuters) - The Washington Post apologized to an Arizona daily newspaper on Wednesday after a two-time Pulitzer-Prize winning reporter plagiarized coverage of accused Tucson gunman Jared Loughner.

The Washington Post issued the apology to The Arizona Republic after two articles written by reporter Sari Horwitz, who won Pulitzers in 1999 and 2002, were found to contain "borrowed and duplicated" material from the newspaper.

"Two articles published by The Post online and in its print editions earlier this month contained substantial material that was borrowed and duplicated, without attribution, from The Arizona Republic newspaper," The Post said in a statement posted on its web site.

The statement said a story about Loughner's indictment, which appeared in the paper on March 5, carried two paragraphs that were "copied" from the Arizona Republic, together with other "facts previously reported" by the newspaper, the statement said.

In a subsequent story published on March 11, which detailed the results of a search of Loughner's home by investigators, ten of the article's 15 paragraphs were "copied in whole or in part," it said.

Loughner, 22, is accused of shooting six people dead in a rampage on January 8, which wounded 13 others including Democratic Representative Gabrielle Giffords, who is recovering in a Texas hospital.

The Arizona Republic said on its web site that similarities between Horwitz's articles and those of The Republic were discovered by staff at the newspaper, which then notified The Post's editor, Marcus Brauchli.

Brauchli has suspended Horwitz for three months for the violations, the Post said on Wednesday in an article posted on its Web site.

Horwitz has twice been awarded the Pulitzer Prize, The Post said. She shared the Pulitzer for investigative reporting for a series exposing the neglect and deaths of 229 children placed in protective care in 2002, and co-wrote an investigation into police shootings that won the 1999 Pulitzer for public service.

(Reporting by Tim Gaynor; editing by Peter Bohan)