Notorious Congressman George Santos charged in EDNY courthouse

May 11, 2023 Rob Abruzzese
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A 13-count indictment was unsealed Wednesday in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, charging Congressman George Santos, representing the Third District of New York, with seven counts of wire fraud, three counts of money laundering, one count of theft of public funds, and two counts of making materially false statements to the House of Representatives. 

The indictment follows a federal grand jury sitting in Central Islip, New York, which returned the indictment under seal yesterday.

The charges were announced by Breon Peace, U.S. Attorney for the EDNY, Kenneth Polite, Jr., Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Michael Driscoll, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), and Anne Donnelly, District Attorney, Nassau County.

Santos, who was arrested Wednesday morning, has pleaded not guilty and is being released on a $500,000 bond. His next court appearance will be on June 30th before U.S. District Judge Joanna Seybert.

The indictment alleges that Santos engaged in multiple fraudulent schemes, including defrauding prospective political supporters through a limited liability company, fraudulently obtaining over $24,000 in unemployment insurance benefits, and making false statements to the House of Representatives regarding his financial condition during each of his two Congressional campaigns.

If convicted of the charges, Santos faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison for the top counts. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

The case is being investigated by the FBI with assistance from the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office and the IRS-Criminal Investigation.

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