Republican George Santos, accused of impersonating his voters and using their credit cards | International
Like his leader, Donald Trump, New York Republican Congressman George Santos is on track to amass a large collection of accusations. Santos, who was already facing fraud and money laundering charges, was accused Tuesday of stealing the identities of donors to his campaign and then using their credit cards to make tens of thousands of dollars in unauthorized charges. Prosecutors say some of the stolen money ended up in his own bank account. The new 23-count indictment replaces another previously filed against the Republican, in which he was accused of embezzling funds from his campaign and lying to Congress about his wealth, among other crimes.
Santos, 35, was elected representative for a district in Long Island and Queens (New York) in the midterm elections held last November, in which the Republicans overtook the state's Democrats by taking four traditional seats. blues. Thanks to an investigation by journalist Andrew Silverstein that he immediately echoed The New York Timesshortly after the hoaxes on which he had built his resume and also his personal biography began to become known. The new charges filed this Tuesday are in addition to those brought against him in May, in which he was accused, among other things, of stealing public funds and lying on federal information forms. The legislator, who has not resigned his seat despite the demonstration of his lies and plans to run for re-election next year, faces up to 20 years in prison if he is found guilty of the most serious charges, electronic fraud and money laundering. money, presented at the time by the office of the Brooklyn federal prosecutor, Breon Peace.
Although he admitted to having fabricated entire chapters of his biography, Santos has pleaded not guilty to the charges and has repeatedly rejected calls for his resignation from Democrats and some of his fellow Republicans. He has only temporarily left the two committees of the House of Representatives that he was appointed to serve after taking possession of his minutes in January. And he did it, he assured then, while the investigation into his controversial trail of lies, already widely demonstrated, lasted.
The new charges include allegations that he charged more than $44,000 to his campaign over several months using cards belonging to contributors without their knowledge. One time, he spent $12,000 on a taxpayer's credit card and transferred the "vast majority" of that money to his personal bank account, according to prosecutors.
Santos is also accused of falsely informing the Federal Election Commission that he had lent his own $500,000 to his campaign in an attempt to convince Republican Party officials that he was a serious and creditworthy candidate, when in reality he had less than $8,000 in the bank. Although during the campaign he boasted of a comfortable social and financial position, with the ownership of several properties and accounts, journalistic investigations demolished the façade of his supposed success and showed that he shared a house with his mother and brothers and other tenants in a modest enclave in Nueva York. The same can be said of his supposed university degree, as well as the first steps of his career on Wall Street: everything was the product of his fabrication.
“As alleged, Santos is accused of stealing people's identities and making charges on his own donors' credit cards without their authorization, lying to the FEC [Comisión Electoral Federal, en sus siglas inglesas] and, by extension, to the public about the financial status of his campaign,” prosecutor Peace said in a statement.
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In addition to lying to voters about a successful career on Wall Street, his academic and athletic achievements, his volunteerism in animal rescue, and even his Jewish heritage - he did so in a district where descendants of Holocaust victims live - which was immediately unmasked before Silverstein -, the network of pathological fabulations from which he made the leap into politics constitutes one of the worst sins that a public figure - and especially a politician - can commit in the United States.
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