June 22, 2024

Dem Texas Rep Indicted on Bribery Charges Used Campaign Money for Legal Fees

A Democrat congressman accused of bribery spent roughly half of the cash for his 2024 marketing campaign on authorized providers, in keeping with knowledge from the Federal Election Commission (FEC).

Out of the almost $1.6 million of marketing campaign funds that Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX) spent, he reportedly spent round $784,900 on authorized providers, in keeping with an evaluation of FEC data, Open Secrets reported.

At the start of May, Cuellar and his spouse, Imelda Rios Cuellar have been indicted on bribery expenses after they allegedly accepted nearly $600,000 in bribes from two overseas entities.

FEC records present nearly all of the cash Cuellar spent went to Clifford Chance LLP, a global legislation agency that’s reportedly representing Cuellar. The legislation agency was given almost $690,000 in funds, in keeping with FEC data.

Perkins Coie LLP is one other legislation agency that exhibits up on the FEC data, and which obtained greater than $46,900. Perkins Coie LLP is a legislation agency that makes a speciality of representing “corporations, trade associations, individuals, candidates, parties, political committees” and lobbyists, in keeping with the legislation agency’s website.

Another legislation agency, Mololamken LLP additionally obtained funds from the Cuellar marketing campaign.

The Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a statement on May 3 asserting that Cuellar and his spouse had been indicted after they’d accepted $600,000 in bribes from an oil and gasoline firm owned by the federal government of Azerbaijan and a financial institution which is headquartered in Mexico City, between December 2014 and November 2021.

In the assertion, the DOJ defined:

The bribe funds have been allegedly laundered, pursuant to sham consulting contracts, by way of a collection of entrance corporations and middlemen into shell corporations owned by Imelda Cuellar, who carried out little to no professional work underneath the contracts.

The DOJ’s indictment of the Cuellar’s got here two years after brokers from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrived on the couple’s dwelling and served them with a search warrant.

In January 2022, FBI brokers not solely searched Cuellar’s dwelling, however searched one other constructing the place his marketing campaign was headquartered.

A lawyer for Cuellar said in April 2022, months after the FBI’s search, that Cuellar had not been the target of the FBI’s search.