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Wednesday, April 7, 2010 as of 11:14 AM ET

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  • Does Donald Trump fix the Miss Universe pageant?

    Did the eventual winner Miss Venezuela get hand-picked by The Donald? (PHOTO: AP)

    Did the eventual winner Miss Venezuela get hand-picked by The Donald? (PHOTO: AP)

    The choreograpaher for the Miss Universe pageant, Michael Schwandt, said in an interview that Donald Trump hand picks six of the 15 Miss Universe finalists, and that the judges are only responsible for the final nine.

    “His reason for doing so, as he told me and he’s told the girls before, is that he left it all up to preliminary judging in the past and some of the most beautiful women, in his opinion, were not in the top fifteen and he was kind of upset about that,” Schwandt told the website “And he decided that he would pick a certain number and let the judges pick a certain number.”

    PHOTOS: Swimsuit shots of this year’s Miss Universe contestants – which ones may Trump have chosen himself?

    But according to the Miss Universe Organization, the information the choreographer gave was “inaccurate and incomplete.”

    “As disclosed at the top of each broadcast, members of the Miss Universe Organization play a role in the selection of the Top 15 semi-finalists. In the 2009 Miss Universe competition, a preliminary panel of judges selected nine of the Top 15 and members of the Miss Universe Organization, including owner Donald J. Trump, selected the remaining six,” MUO President Paula M. Shugart said in a statement to FOX411. “A separate panel of judges, introduced live at the Finals telecast, is solely responsible for the selection of the Top 10, Top 5 and the ultimate winner of the pageant.”

    Shugart also stated that the system (which has been in place since 2005) is “fully disclosed” to all those associated with the pageant and that the procedure is overseen by the accounting firm of Ernst & Young and NBC Program Standards and Compliance.

    “To in any way call into question the integrity of the judging process or suggest the pageant is somehow orchestrated or “rigged” is utterly false and misleading,” she added.

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