Case against Wasserman Schultz ex-IT aide expands with 4-count indictment – Trending Stuff

The federal case against Imran Awan, a former IT aide for Democratic Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, expanded Thursday with an indictment on four counts including conspiracy and making false statements.

He was charged with a single bank fraud count; his wife Hina Alvi also was indicted Thursday.  

The grand jury decision in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia comes roughly a month after Awan was arrested at Dulles airport in Virginia trying to board a plane to Pakistan, where his family is from.

Awan and IT aides for House Democrats have been on researchers radar for months over concerns of gear theft that was alleged, potential double-billing, and access to sensitive computer systems. Many lawmakers fired Awan in February, but Schultz had kept him on until his arrest in July.

The indictment itself, which only represents formal charges and is not a finding of guilt, addresses separate allegations which Awan and his wife engaged in a conspiracy to obtain home equity lines of credit from the Congressional Federal Credit Union by giving false information about two properties and then sending the proceeds to individuals in Pakistan.

The case has put renewed scrutiny on Wasserman Schultz for maintaining Awan on the payroll for months, even after a criminal investigation was revealed and he was barred from the House IT network.   

Awan and other family members for years had a lucrative arrangement for IT-related work on Capitol Hill for House Democrats.   According to The Daily Caller, the members of the Pakistani family made at least $4 million since 2009.

In a recent interview published in the Sun Sentinel, Wasserman Schultz blamed the right-wing media circus fringe for the focus on Awan.

The former head of the Democratic National Committee suggested it is all part of an effort to distract from the investigation of Russian infantry in the 2016 effort and possible ties to President Trump’s team.  

Any chance away from that they take they can to pull peoples eyes and ears, Wasserman Schultz told the paper.

Her colleagues in Congress, however, say that there are safety consequences in her staffer’s case.

We must investigate how our systems might have been compromised, Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., recently told Fox & Friends.

Though Awan was barred from the IT community, Wasserman Schultz spokesman David Damron told Fox News their office worked with the House Chief Administrative Officer to arrange for the employee to keep providing services without access to the House network.

Awan, 37, of Virginia, earlier pleaded not guilty to one count of bank fraud.

Attorney Christopher Gowen told Fox News  that national authorities don’t have any evidence of misconduct by Awan relating to his IT duties.

Fox News Jake Gibson contributed to this report. 

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/

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