LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) _ A business partner of Gov. Jim Guy Tucker in an Arkansas land deal pleaded guilty today to a misdemeanor charge of conspiracy to misapply funds from a small business investment company.

Stephen A. Smith, who was executive assistant to President Clinton during Clinton's first term as Arkansas governor, admitted to fraudulently acquiring a loan from David Hale's Capital Management Services Inc. He filed a false business loan application to receive $65,000.

Prosecutors say Smith told Hale's lending company he would use the money to finance the development of his computer-based communications company that did demographic surveys.

Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr said Smith actually used the money to help pay off a $165,000 loan that he, his father, Tucker and Madison Guaranty Savings & Loan President James McDougal took out in 1984 to finance the Kings River Land Co. development in northwest Arkansas.

Tucker was indicted Wednesday in a separate case.

While the Tucker and Smith cases were brought by the Whitewater prosecutor, neither is tied to the land development the initially attracted the attention of Starr.

McDougal and Clinton were co-owners in Whitewater, but there is no relation between that development and Kings Land.