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Campaign Fraud Case Implicates Indy Gaming Firm—But Who Is It?

first_imgFacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailShare Campaign Fraud Case Implicates Indy Gaming Firm—But Who Is It? News that a Republican strategist in Maryland pleaded guilty on Thursday to conspiracy in what investigators say was a scheme to funnel money from an Indianapolis-based gaming company to an Indiana congressional candidate raises more questions than prosecutors seem ready to answer.And you have to think there are some folks in Indy getting pretty nervous.The campaign in question was former state Sen. Brent Waltz‘s bid for the GOP nomination in the 9th District in 2016. Waltz told IBJ late Thursday he was not aware of any illegal donations to the unsuccessful campaign and said he’s been fully cooperating with investigators.And it seems the Republican strategist in Maryland—Chip O’Neil—is cooperating, too. In court, he admitted that at least eight people, including his girlfriend, were used as conduits for illegal corporate donations from the Indianapolis gaming company to the House campaign. And the plea agreement calls for O’Neil to spill his guts about what he knows.Lots of people are named in the charging documents and O’Neil’s plea agreement—but not the Indianapolis gaming company. Neither is the company’s vice president and general counsel, who is accused in the filings of helping to set up the scheme to “evade the restrictions of corporate contributions to campaigns, to evade the limits placed on money that individuals could contribute to a campaign, and to disguise the fact that the gaming corporation was the true source of the funds.”But those names could be revealed soon as the case moves forward and O’Neil provides information in exchange for a lighter sentence. No doubt there are plenty of folks waiting to see where the dominos fall.Meanwhile, IBJ has the details on what prosecutors have revealed so far about the Indiana case and how it fits into a larger crackdown on fraudulent political action committees.last_img read more

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