Shays: Campaign Finance Issues

According to reports, defeated Rep. Chris Shays admitted that a campaign “employee committed some kind of financial fraud during the course of the campaign.”

The announcement was vague about the circumstances, only saying that the work on the $3.6 million campaign’s final financial filings demonstrated “a series of anomalies.” Those anomalies were apparently discovered by campaign treasurer Ralph DePanfilis and finance director Kathleen Pierce and focused on a specific former employee.

The campaign didn’t confirm whether the financial fraud involved embezzlement, but Shays and the campaign’s attorney contacted the FBI, Federal Election Commission and the U.S. attorney’s office to report the irregularities. A campaign spokesman, Michael Fox, wouldn’t describe the nature of the incidents any further today, saying he would “prefer not to comment on it or characterize it at this point, given that it’s been referred to law enforcement.”

The campaign’s most recent post-election filing with the FEC yesterday included a brief note saying that “campaign funds may have been misappropriated.” It said, “The Committee is attempting to determine the nature and extent of the misappropriation. The Committee will amend this report and, as necessary, any previous reports as it obtains the necessary information.”

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