US prosecutors have introduced a number of prison expenses in opposition to Rep. Jorge Santos, accusing him of operating a number of expenses on the bank cards of his marketing campaign donors.
The Justice Division introduced 23 expenses in opposition to the Republican, together with wire fraud and id theft.
The transfer, which builds on a earlier indictment, additionally accused him of mendacity to the Federal Election Fee.
Santos has not but commented on the developments introduced on Tuesday.
“Santos allegedly led a number of further fraudulent prison schemes, mendacity to the American public within the course of,” FBI Assistant Director in Cost James Smith mentioned in an announcement.
He added, “Anybody who makes an attempt to violate the legislation as a part of a political marketing campaign will face punishment within the prison justice system.”
The costs are based mostly on 13 counts to which the New York congressman pleaded not responsible in Might. He was accused of laundering marketing campaign funds to pay for his private bills and illegally claiming unemployment advantages whereas working.
Talking on the time, Santos accused prosecutors of waging a political “witch hunt” in opposition to him.
The brand new indictment alleges that he collected greater than $44,000 (£35,000) from his marketing campaign over a interval of months utilizing bank cards belonging to contributors who have been unaware they’d been defrauded.
On one event, he charged $12,000 (£9,700) from a shareholder’s bank card and finally transferred the overwhelming majority of that cash to his private checking account, the charging doc says.
Prosecutors additionally mentioned he made a sequence of sham loans to qualify for GOP help.
“Santos inflated falsely reported marketing campaign receipts with nonexistent loans and contributions that have been both fabricated or stolen,” Bryon Tempo, U.S. Legal professional for the Japanese District of New York, mentioned in an announcement.
“This workplace will relentlessly pursue prison expenses in opposition to anybody who makes use of the election course of as a chance to defraud the general public and our establishments of presidency.”
The 35-year-old will seem in court docket once more on October 27.
Mr. Santos was elected in 2022 after pulling off an upset victory in a Democratic-leaning congressional district, the place he described himself as the primary brazenly LGBT Republican to serve in Congress.
However he has been concerned in a number of critical scandals since taking workplace in January.
He was accused of mendacity about his college levels and work expertise. violating marketing campaign finance and battle of curiosity legal guidelines; Falsely claiming that his grandparents survived the Holocaust; And making a pretend animal charity that he used to siphon off cash meant for a dying veteran’s canine.
Final February, Home Democrats launched a decision to expel Santos, a principally symbolic measure within the Republican-controlled chamber.
He has additionally beforehand confronted calls to resign from inside his personal get together, and former Home Speaker Kevin McCarthy just lately advised reporters that he wouldn’t help Santos’ re-election bid.
The most recent accusations come simply days after a high Santos election aide admitted she falsified some marketing campaign monetary data.
Prosecutors mentioned Nancy Marks reported a pretend mortgage of $500,000 (£410,000) that Santos claimed to have given to the marketing campaign.
False reviews imply the marketing campaign qualifies for the mandatory fundraising requirements to obtain monetary help from the Republican Nationwide Committee.