Embattled Rep. George Santos, R-N.Y., turned himself in to federal authorities Wednesday morning as it was revealed he faces 13 criminal charges including wire fraud, money laundering, theft of public funds, and false statements, officials said.
Santos was charged with:
- Seven counts of wire fraud
- Three counts of money laundering
- One count of theft of public funds
- Two counts of making materially false statements to the House of Representatives
The 20-page, 13-count indictment against Santos, filed in the Eastern District of New York, was unsealed shortly after he surrendered.
Santos pleaded not guilty to the charges and was released on a $500,000 bond during an arraignment Wednesday afternoon at the federal courthouse in Central Islip on Long Island.
The indictment alleges that while Santos was paid an annual salary of $120,000 at a Florida-based investment firm in 2020, he applied for unemployment benefits in New York, receiving more that $24,000.
It also accuses Santos of soliciting donations to a company that he said would help his election to Congress, before using that money on personal purchases, including designer clothing.
And he's charged with making false statements on his Financial Disclosure Statement that he filed with the House of Representatives before his election.
Santos has faced bipartisan calls to resign after it was revealed that he lied about parts of his resume while running for Congress last year. Santos fabricated details about his education, career, ancestry, and charity work during his campaign.
Last month, he announced that he's running for reelection in 2024.
Taken together, the allegations in the indictment charge Santos with relying on repeated dishonesty and deception to ascend to the halls of Congress and enrich himself.
— U.S. Attorney Breon Peace