Judge tosses request
In case you haven’t heard, former GOP Congressman Aaron Schock tried to get indictments on 22 criminal corruption charges tossed. These include filing false tax returns, mail fraud, wire fraud, submitting false reports to the FEC, false statements, and theft of government funds.
But things didn’t go as planned because the judge refused to his requests.
As reported in Politico:
“Schock’s arguments for appealing the indictment centered on two main points. First, under the Speech or Debate Clause, a constitutional protection given to lawmakers and staff for legitimate legislative activities, he can’t be charged with falsifying reimbursement claims.
Secondly, in a more technical argument, Schock’s lawyers asserted that since reimbursement regulations were created by House rule, it would be a violation of separation-of-powers principles for the executive branch, via the Justice Department, to charge him with a crime. Under Schock’s approach, only the House could interpret whether he violated House rules.”
Schock has been trying to get away from these charges for some time now. Last fall was his most recent attempt – which failed miserably.
Last summer, Schock’s legal team asked for the case to be dismissed because, according to the lawyers, witnesses were asked “distasteful, offensive,” and “prejudicial” questions about every part of Schock’s sex life including whether he is gay and if his girlfriend was a beard.
His lawyers even accused investigators of “prosecutorial misconduct on a variety of grounds” over the invasive questions and asked for the case to be dismissed.
The former house member's problems started when pictures of his Downton Abbey-inspired congressional office were leaked. Later, it was then discovered that he accepted a designer's services for free.
In 2015, the FBI opened an investigation into Schock’s finances; an investigation that ultimately revealed “untoward allegations” about Schock that would damage his reputation, according to his attorneys.
As reported in Towleroad, “Schock currently faces a 24-count indictment for filing false tax returns and covering up fraud schemes, and using government and campaign funds improperly.
The disgraced anti-gay Illinois lawmaker resigned from his seat in 2015 after questions arose about his alleged misuse of funds.
Schock can appeal Wednesday’s ruling to the full 7th Circuit Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court.”