Nancy Marks and a Congressional Candidate Filed Fraudulent Fundraising Reports With the Federal Election Commission for the Purpose of Obtaining Financial Support for the Campaign
CENTRAL ISLIP, NY – Earlier today, at the federal courthouse in Central Islip, Nancy Marks, the former treasurer for a candidate for the United States House of Representatives, pleaded guilty to conspiring with a congressional candidate to: (a) commit wire fraud; (b) make materially false statements; (c) obstruct the administration of the Federal Election Commission (FEC); and (d) commit aggravated identity theft. Today’s proceeding was held before United States District Judge Joanna Seybert. When sentenced, Marks faces up to five years in prison, as well as restitution and a fine.
Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Nicole M. Argentieri, Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, and James Smith, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), announced the guilty plea.
“With today’s guilty plea, Marks has admitted that she conspired with a congressional candidate to lie to the FEC and, by extension, the public about the financial state of the candidate’s campaign for New York’s Third Congressional District, falsely inflating the campaign’s reported receipts with non-existent contributions and loans,” stated United States Attorney Peace. “My Office will continue holding accountable those who perpetrate a fraud on the public and the institutions that help maintain transparency in the electoral process.”
Mr. Peace expressed his thanks to the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office for their assistance with the investigation.
“Marks engaged in criminal conduct intended to deceive and defraud the American public. This guilty plea holds her responsible for those various fraudulent schemes and brazen misrepresentations,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Smith. “The FBI will continue to investigate all allegations of campaign finance abuse to ensure openness, fairness, and transparency in our election process.”
According to court filings and facts presented during the plea proceeding, Marks was the treasurer for the principal congressional campaign committee of a candidate for the United States House of Representatives during the 2022 election cycle in New York’s Third Congressional District (the “Candidate”). During this election cycle, Marks and the candidate devised and executed a fraudulent scheme to obtain money for the campaign by submitting materially false reports to the FEC on behalf of the campaign in which they inflated the campaign’s fundraising numbers for the purpose of misleading the FEC, a national party committee, and the public.
Specifically, the purpose of the scheme was to ensure that the Candidate and his campaign qualified for a program administered by the national party committee, pursuant to which the national party committee would provide financial and logistical support to the Candidate and his campaign committee. To qualify for the program, the Candidate had to demonstrate, among other things, that his congressional campaign had raised at least $250,000 from third-party contributors in a single quarter.
To meet that financial benchmark and to further demonstrate to the national party committee that the congressional candidate’s campaign was financially viable, Marks and the Candidate agreed to falsely report to the FEC that at least 10 family members of Marks and the Candidate had made contributions to the campaign, when Marks and the Candidate both knew that these individuals had not made the reported contributions. In addition, Marks and the Candidate agreed to falsely report to the FEC that the congressional candidate had loaned the campaign significant sums of money, including in one instance a $500,000 loan, when, in fact, the congressional candidate had not made the reported loans and, at the time the loans were reported, did not have the funds necessary to make such loans.
Through the execution of this scheme, Marks and the Candidate ensured that the Candidate met the necessary financial benchmarks to qualify for the program administered by the national party committee. As a result of qualifying for the program, the congressional campaign received financial support.
The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Public Integrity Section, the Long Island Criminal Division, and the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section. Assistant United States Attorneys Ryan Harris, Anthony Bagnuola, and Laura Zuckerwise, along with Trial Attorneys Jacob Steiner and John Taddei, are in charge of the prosecution with assistance from Paralegal Specialist Rachel Friedman. Former Trial Attorney Jolee Porter of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section also provided substantial contributions to the prosecution.
Source : Justice