From the Peoria Journal-Star
Federal prosecutors allege that former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock "defrauded the federal government and his campaign committees and covering it up with false and fraudulent statements, claims and invoices."Schock, 35, could have been set for years in his safe Republican seat, the biggest threat to his career was decennial redistricting by gerrymandering Illinois Democrats.
The 24-count indictment, filed Thursday, charges the Peoria Republican with wire fraud, falsification of Federal Election Commission filings, mail fraud, and theft of government funds, making false statements and filing a false tax return. All are felonies that could send Schock to prison for several years. The most serious counts are the wire and mail fraud as well as the falsification charges which all carry a 20-year maximum sentence.
"These charges allege that Mr. Schock deliberately and repeatedly violated federal law, to his personal and financial advantage. Mr. Schock held public office at the time of the alleged offenses, but public office does not exempt him or anyone else from accountability for alleged intentional misuse of public funds and campaign funds," said U.S. Attorney Jim Lewis in a news release.
But Schock was his own worse enemy.
Schock's troubles began when the Washington Post exposed his expensive remodeling of his office that was based on a room in the British drama Downton Abbey. The flood gates broke as a story about his using PAC funds for Super Bowl tickets, which were later sold at a profit and discrepancies in mileage reimbursements for vehicles used by him and his staff emerged, among other tales of misdeeds.
So another Illinois politician has been indicted. Who'll be next and how soon will it be?