DOJ Indicts Santos on New Charges of Campaign-Finance Fraud

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() Rep. George Santos, R-N.Y., was  indicted in federal court Tuesday on 23 counts of fraud, including money laundering and identity theft, according to a press release from the Justice Department.

The charges were filed Tuesday in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.

The indictment alleges the freshman congressman committed:

  • two counts of wire fraud
  • several counts of making false statements and falsifying records with the Federal Election Commission
  • two counts of identity theft
  • seven counts of wire fraud
  • three counts of money laundering
  • one count of theft of public funds
  • two counts of making false statements in the U.S. House of Representatives

Breon Peace, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, strongly condemned the embattled congressman for allegedly using his position of power to defraud taxpayers and the government.

“This Office will relentlessly pursue criminal charges against anyone who uses the electoral process as an opportunity to defraud the public and our government institutions,” Peace said in a statement.

In addition to allegedly defrauding taxpayers and the federal government, the criminal complaint states Santos stole the identities of family members and engaged in credit card fraud targeting campaign contributors, saying it was “to fraudulently inflate his campaign coffers.”

“As alleged, Santos is charged with stealing people’s identities and making charges on his own donors’ credit cards without their authorization, lying to the FEC and, by extension, the public about the financial state of his campaign,” said Peace.

In collaboration with the Eastern District Court of New York, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI assisted in the investigation. Santos is scheduled to return to the Central Islip court on Oct. 27.

The DOJ had previously filed charges against Santos in May, but the new indictment will replace the earlier one, the press release noted.

It comes less than a week after Nancy Marks, the former treasury of Santos’s 2022 campaign, pleaded guilty to related conduct and, presumably, agreed to testify against her former boss.

The victory of Santos—who is among the first openly gay Republicans elected to Congress—in what had historically been a blue New York district, roiled Democrats in a year where they otherwise hoped to dive a narrative that they had staved off a red-wave election and reversed projected trends of backlash against a radical policy agenda.

The rumors that Santos was a serial liar quickly spread, particularly as newly elected then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., made good on a promise to remove several Democrat liars and anti-Semites from their committees.

But with figures like notoriously corrupt Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., in their own midst, Democrats had little moral high ground from which to demand that Santos resign his seat.

Following Santos’s latest re-indictment, former Democrat Rep. Thomas Suozzi quickly announced his intention to challenge Santos again in the coming 2024 election.

Headline USA’s Ben Sellers contributed to this report.

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