George Santos news - live: New York Republican tells reporter federal charges are ‘news to me’

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George Santos, the New York congressman who rose to prominence for a string of exaggerations , lies, and irregularities related to his personal background and campaign finances, has been charged with a series of federal offences.

The exact nature of the charges aren’t yet public and are under seal, but concern federal crimes, NBC News and CNN report.

The New York Republican has been under investigation by multiple bodies since being elected, including the House Ethics Committee, as well as the Federal Election Commission, and local and federal prosecutors.

Mr Santos could reportedly appear in court as soon as Wednesday.

Key Points

Will George Santos resign if he’s found guilty?

01:31 , Josh Marcus

House Leadership certainly wants that to be the case.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy told CNN he would ask his fellow Republican to give up his seat if he’s convicted on federal charges.

“Just like we had before with Jeff Fortenberry, he had the same ability, I removed him from committees, but he was found guilty and then I told him he needed to resign,” the GOP leader said. “That is my policy and principles on this.”

Mr Fortenberry, a former Nebraska rep, resigned in 2022 after being convicted of lying to federal officials about an illegal $30,000 foreign contribution to his campaign.

Nebraska US Rep. Fortenberry found guilty in campaign probe

Federal charges may finally answer the big question about George Santos: How did he earn so much money?

01:11 , Josh Marcus

George Santos has admitted to certain lies, such as falsely claiming Jewish ancestry, and the federal charges reportedly filed against him on Tuesday may answer another of the big question marks in his background: How did he earn all that money?

Between 2014 and 2017, the New York Republican was the subject of three eviction proceedings in Queens for unpaid rent.

On a 2020 financial document, he listed an annual income of $55,000.

Just a few years later, when he was running for Congress, Mr Santos appeared to be flushed with cash.

He claimed that his company, Devolder Organization, paid him a $750,000 salary in each of the last two years, as well as another $1m to $5m in dividents, according to the AP.

Not bad for a company that was incorporated in 2021.

The apparent windfall caught the eye of investigators when Mr Santos lent his campaign and political action committee more than $750,000.

Will George Santos have to leave office if he’s convicted?

Wednesday 10 May 2023 00:51 , Josh Marcus

Not necessarily.

People under criminal indictment or even those convicted of crimes can still serve in Congress, unless they commit treason-level offences outlined in the 14th Amendment, CNN reports.

The same goes for the White House. Candidates can even run from inside prison.

Such considerations may be on the mind of Donald Trump, who was found liable on Tuesday for sexually abusing and defaming writer E Jean Carroll, and faces 34 felony charges in New York for a hush money scheme.

George Santos surprised by federal charges

Wednesday 10 May 2023 00:31 , Josh Marcus

Congressman George Santos was apparently shocked to learn he was the subject of federal charges, which were reportedly filed under seal on Tuesday.

“This is news to me,” the Long Island Republican told the Associated Press.

“You’re the first to call me about this,” he added.

Our DC bureau chief on the ‘funniest outcome’ in the Santos case

Tuesday 9 May 2023 23:44 , Josh Marcus

George Santos’s rise in politics has not been without comedy, but if the Long Island Republican is succesfully charged with federal crimes, it could yield a particularly slapstick result, according to Independent Washington bureau chief Eric Garcia.

What has George Santos said about his many campaign exaggerations?

Tuesday 9 May 2023 23:34 , Josh Marcus

For a man accused of telling numerous lies, and reportedly charged on Tuesday with federal crimes, Representative George Santos has spent recent months apparently unbothered.

In April, he said he has a “clean conscience.”

Read John Bowden’s full report on the Long Island Republican’s questionable defence.

George Santos insists he has a ‘clean conscience’ after lying about background

WATCH: The Independent’s documentary on George Santos’s many lies

Tuesday 9 May 2023 23:24 , Josh Marcus

George Santos made waves on the political scene of Washington D.C. by flipping New York’s 3rd congressional district seat in the November midterms, a once reliable Democratic seat. But, soon, reports emerged that many things in his résumé and the life story told to the public wasn’t all strictly true. Santos is refusing to stand aside as the controversy mounts but how long can that position hold?

Senior US Correspondent Richard Hall visited Long Island and Nassau county to find out the truth, trying to track down the real George Santos.

Watch the full documentary here.

The imposter in Congress | On The Ground

George Santos: Every lie disgraced Republican Congressman has been accused of making

Tuesday 9 May 2023 23:14 , Josh Marcus

It can be difficult keeping up with the list of fictions that George Santos has been accused of telling, admitted telling, or merely been caught spinning red-handed following a contradictory statement.

But, do not fret: The Independent is here, and we’re keeping track of the whole list of lies even as it continues to grow — both in number and in the sheer scale of the humiliation that it presents for not just Mr Santos, who remains adamant that he will serve two years in office as representative for New York’s third district, but for the Republican House caucus as a whole.

Read our full round-up of the many scandals of George Santos.

Every lie George Santos has been accused of making

Breaking news: George Santos hit with federal charges

Tuesday 9 May 2023 23:09 , Josh Marcus

Federal prosecutors have filed criminal charges against George Santos, the Republican congressman whose campaign was littered with falsehoods about his past, CNN reported.

Mr Santos is expected to appear on Wednesday at a federal court in New York’s Eastern District, where the charges have been filed, the network reported, citing three sources familiar with the matter.

The Independent contacted the Eastern District for comment.

The exact charges have not yet been revealed, but the Washington Post previously reported that the Justice Department’s Public Integrity Section was investigating Mr Santos — specifically, his campaign finances.

Richard Hall is following the story for The Independent.

Prosecutors file criminal charges against New York congressman George Santos: report