Trump calls Mark Zuckerberg 'a criminal'

Trump calls Mark Zuckerberg 'a criminal'

Former President Donald Trump has defended U.S. Representative Jeff Fortenberry, following the Republican's indictment for lying to federal authorities about a $30,000 campaign contribution.

A federal grand jury indicted Fortenberry on Tuesday October 19, after the lawmaker put out a defiant YouTube video featuring his wife and dog in front of a cornfield where he vowed to fight the charges.

The indictment charges the nine-term Republican with one count of 'scheming to falsify and conceal material facts' and two counts of making false statements to to the FBI, according to the Los Angeles US Attorney's office.

The office said Fortenberry made the false statements to agents looking into illegal campaign contributions to his 2016 reelection effort.

According to the indictment, Lebanese-Nigerian billionaire Gilbert Chagoury, despite being a foreign national prohibited from donating to US candidates, 'arranged' for $30,000 in contributions to Fortenberry in 2016.

Chagoury entered into a deferred prosecution agreement with the U.S. Attorney's Office in 2019 and admitted to providing illegal contributions to four American candidates.

The co-host of the Fortenberry 2016 fundraiser where the money came in, identified only as 'Individual H,' began cooperating with the feds in September 2016, telling agents about the illegal contributions.

H informed special agents about the third-party contributions and began working with federal authorities in September 2016. During the investigation, they examined whether the congressman received the funds and whether he knew about it.

In the spring of 2018, Fortenberry contacted the co-host to organize another fundraiser when the individual allegedly told him about the illegal campaign contributions provided by an associate of Chagoury.Latest Post