U.S. Rep. George Santos Indicted for Identity Theft and Fraud

U.S. Rep. George Santos Indicted for Identity Theft and Fraud

U.S. Representative George Santos, a New York Republican, has been indicted on charges of stealing the identities of campaign donors and using their credit cards for unauthorized charges. The new 23-count indictment, filed on Tuesday, replaces a previous one from May that accused Santos of embezzlement and lying to Congress about his wealth.

According to prosecutors, Santos allegedly charged over $44,000 to his campaign using credit cards belonging to contributors without their knowledge. He then transferred a significant portion of the funds, approximately $12,000 in one instance, to his personal bank account. The indictment also alleges that Santos falsely reported a $500,000 loan to his campaign to deceive Republican Party officials into providing financial support.

U.S. Attorney Breon Peace stated that Santos is charged with stealing identities, making unauthorized charges, and lying to the Federal Elections Commission about his campaign’s financial state. Santos, who has previously claimed innocence and referred to the charges as a “witch hunt,” declined to comment on the superseding indictment after a Republican conference at the U.S. Capitol.

If convicted, Santos could face a lengthy prison term. Despite the mounting legal peril, he has resisted calls to resign and intends to run for reelection next year. Santos’ personal and professional biography has come under scrutiny, revealing a history of deception and alleged schemes to enrich himself and mislead donors.

Santos’ former campaign treasurer, Nancy Marks, pleaded guilty to a fraud conspiracy charge last week, admitting to submitting bogus campaign finance reports. The new indictment now includes Santos as a co-conspirator, alleging their involvement in a scheme to fake a $500,000 campaign loan and record fake donations from relatives to meet fundraising goals.

The credit card fraud scheme began in December 2021, shortly after Santos failed to qualify for a Republican Party program that would have provided support for his campaign. Santos’ financial history has raised questions, as he claimed wealth but had a record of low-paying jobs, unemployment, eviction cases, and criminal charges related to bad checks.

Additionally, Sam Miele, a fundraiser for Santos, was previously indicted on federal charges for impersonating a high-ranking congressional aide while soliciting campaign contributions. Prosecutors allege that Miele impersonated the former chief of staff to GOP Rep. Kevin McCarthy.

Author: CrimeDoor

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