The chief strategist of a pro-Donald Trump super PAC was found guilty on felony charges in federal court on Thursday as part of a group that concealed the expenditure of campaign money to buy the endorsement of an Iowa politician for the 2012 campaign of Ron Paul.
Along with Jesse Benton, who was hired to lead the pro-Trump Great America PAC in March, former Paul aides Dimitri Kesari and John Tate were also found guilty by a jury in Iowa. Both Benton and Tate were longtime advisers to Rand Paul, while Kesari served as deputy campaign manager for Ron Paul’s 2012 bid.
A Justice Department official confirmed the convictions to POLITICO, which include conspiracy, causing false records, causing false campaign expenditure reports and false statements scheme. The convictions are related to an alleged coverup of the attempted bribing of Iowa state Sen. Kent Sorensen. While Sorensen initially supported Michele Bachmann, he switched his support to Ron Paul, prompting allegations of bribery from the Bachmann campaign.
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