Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Feds Indict Alleged Scam PAC Operators

DownloadPolitico reports that an indictment unsealed today reveals federal prosecutors have charged three individuals with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and lying to the Federal Election Commission. The allegations relate to the raising of approximately $3.5 million during the 2016 election, with almost none of those funds going to any political cause. Instead a large portion of the funds allegedly went to organizers personally. The two PACs involved were bipartisan - one claimed to raise funds to support Donald Trump, and the other claimed to raise funds to support Hillary Clinton.

While the indictment relates to activities back in 2016, the Daily Beast and OpenSecrets have been investigating a network of alleged scam PACs that has been operating since then, as detailed in this report from last month. The latest twist appears to involve organizations that register as section 527 political organizations with the IRS but not as political committees with the FEC, presumably in order to take advantage of the harder to access IRS-collected data and lesser IRS enforcement resources. The FBI views these activities as serious enough to warrant a public warning last April.

Additional Coverage: N.Y. Times; SFist.

Lloyd Mayer

Federal – Executive, In the News | Permalink


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