Democratic Candidate Charged with Wire Fraud
Karen Carter Peterson, the only federal Democratic candidate the Black Lives Matter PAC backed during the current election cycle, has been charged with wire fraud for misusing campaign and party funds.
According to a report, Peterson received more than $100,000 from the Black Lives Matter PAC for her failed Congressional bid in Louisiana’s second district.
Peterson, a former Louisiana Democratic Party chair, resigned from the state senate in April because of her mental health and gambling addiction.
This month, Peterson was charged in federal court with one count of wire fraud for using campaign and party funds on personal expenses — including gambling-related costs.
According to the Louisiana Illuminator, Peterson’s scheme involved diverting the funds to four individuals and four companies, which then cashed the checks and provided Peterson with all or most of the money.
In a July 14 press release, the Justice Department said Peterson also filed false campaign finance reports that “mischaracterized expenditures as being for legitimate purposes related to her campaign or the holding of public office.”
Peterson also publicly addressed the charges on July 14.
“Today marks an important step in my life-long recovery as I continue to address my gambling addiction,” Peterson tweeted. “I sincerely apologize for the impact from my compulsive behavior resulting from this addiction.”
“I have made full repayment of funds used as a result of my addiction and I will continue to make amends,” she continued. “Staying true to the steps of my ongoing recovery, I have been forthright, honest, and fully cooperative with the US Attorneys’ Office in their investigation.”
The Justice Department said Peterson faces up to 20 years in prison and $250,000 in fines. She’s scheduled to appear in federal court on August 1.