Ex-GOP staffer pleads guilty to fraud, money laundering on behalf of ex-lawmaker

Ex-GOP staffer pleads guilty to fraud, money laundering on behalf of ex-lawmaker
© Greg Nash

A longtime aide to former Rep. Steve StockmanStephen (Steve) Ernest StockmanFormer aide sentenced for helping ex-congressman in fraud scheme Former congressman sentenced to 10 years in prison for campaign finance scheme Rising expectations could change North Korea forever MORE (R-Texas) pleaded guilty on Wednesday to fraud and money laundering charges in a scheme to funnel charitable donations into the political campaigns at the congressman's direction.

Jason Posey, 46, pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud, one count of wire fraud and one count of money laundering, the Justice Department said in a statement.

Posey's sentencing is set for March 29. He faces up to 45 years in prison and a fine of more than $4.8 million, Chief U.S. District Judge Lee Rosenthal of the Southern District of Texas said, according to the Houston Chronicle.

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Posey, who was arrested in May, served as the director of special projects and treasurer for Stockman's campaign committee. 

The Justice Department said the former congressional staffer admitted that he and another aide, Thomas Dodd, illegally diverted $15,000 of charitable donations into the bank account of Stockman's campaign, falsely attributing the contributions to themselves and their parents in federal filings.

Stockman allegedly also directed Posey to send a letter to a charitable donor claiming that the donor's $350,000 contribution had gone to a charitable cause. Instead, the Justice Department said, the funds were used for other things, including Stockman's campaigns.

Posey also said that he and Stockman raised $450,571 for the former representative's 2014 bid against Senate Majority Whip John CornynJohn CornynThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump hews to NRA on guns and eyes lower taxes The Hill's Morning Report - Trump on defense over economic jitters Democrats keen to take on Cornyn despite formidable challenges MORE (R-Texas) by funneling donations through an independent advocacy group he created.

Stockman was indicted in March on fraud, conspiracy and money laundering charges. He has maintained his innocence and blamed his arrest on the so-called deep state — a conspiracy theory that a shadow government of unelected bureaucrats controls the country. 

The Texas Republican served two terms in Congress: One from 1995 to 1997 and another from 2013 to 2015.