June 4, 2023

By Fredreka Schouten | CNN

Rep. George Santos has named himself the treasurer of his marketing campaign committee, marking the most recent twist in a monthslong saga over puzzling filings his marketing campaign has made with federal regulators.

The brand new submitting, made late Friday afternoon with the Federal Election Fee, comes a little bit greater than per week after federal prosecutors unveiled a 13-count prison indictment, charging the New York Republican with wire fraud, fraudulently acquiring Covid-19 unemployment advantages and mendacity about his private funds on varieties he submitted to the US Home of Representatives as a candidate. He has denied wrongdoing and pleaded not responsible to the costs.

Santos’ lawyer and an aide didn’t instantly reply to CNN’s inquiries on Friday night.

Questions lengthy have swirled concerning the identification of Santos’ marketing campaign treasurer. This 12 months, Santos’ marketing campaign named a brand new treasurer recognized as Andrew Olson, however federal and state information didn’t present anybody with that title serving because the treasurer of another federal committees or any political committees working in New York state.

On the time that Olson was added as treasurer, the handle related to him and Santos’ marketing campaign was that of a mixed-use condominium and business constructing in Elmhurst, New York, the place the congressman’s sister had resided till earlier this 12 months.

Earlier this month, the Residents for Accountability and Ethics in Washington watchdog group, lodged a criticism with the Federal Election Fee questioning Olson’s existence and asking the company to research whether or not the marketing campaign had probably violated marketing campaign finance legal guidelines with filings that listed that particular person as treasurer.

Political committees aren’t allowed to boost or spend cash with no treasurer. Candidates legally can function the treasurers of their very own campaigns, however it’s uncommon for them to take action.

In his brief time in Washington, Santos’ marketing campaign filings have confronted intense scrutiny. They vary from questions on dozens of marketing campaign bills listed at $199.99 – a penny beneath the brink for which campaigns are required to retain receipts – to confusion about who was submitting the treasurer’s function.

On January 25, as an example, Santos’ marketing campaign listed a Wisconsin political advisor as changing the congressman’s longtime treasurer Nancy Marks. However the advisor’s lawyer stated the marketing campaign had achieved so with out his authorization, and that his consumer had turned down the job.

Then, on January 31, Marks knowledgeable the FEC that she had resigned. Later that day, Olson’s digital signature first appeared on a Santos report.

Santos has argued previously that the filings weren’t his duty.

“I don’t contact any of my FEC stuff, proper?” he informed CNN again in January. “So don’t be disingenuous and report that I did as a result of you understand that each marketing campaign hires fiduciaries.”