Following the announcement that Brazilian authorities intend to reactivate a check fraud investigation against New York Congressman-elect George Santos, he may be sentenced to anywhere from one to five years in jail.
That is if he is found guilty of fraud in Brazil 14 years ago.
Early in 2008, Brazilian authorities allege that Santos, who was 19 years old at the time, used a stolen checkbook and a phony identity to make fraudulent transactions totaling over $700 at a clothes shop in the city of Niterói.
This shop is located outside of Rio de Janeiro. Subsequently, his mother reported to the authorities that Santos had taken a cheque from a former employer for whom she had worked.
In 2009, Santos confessed to having committed the offense. He wrote on the social media website Orkut that he was aware he had “messed up,” but he wanted to make amends to the proprietor of the store.
Charges of fraud were lodged against Santos in September 2011, but by then, he had already relocated to the United States. Because law enforcement officers could not find Santos, the case was dismissed.
Santos has denied any role in criminal activity.
In late December, he stated to The New York Post that he was not a lawbreaker in this jurisdiction, nor Brazil, nor any other purview in the world.
George Santos/Anthony Devolder wearing a stolen scarf at a ‘Stop the Steal’ rally perfectly captures his fundamental fraudulence as a human being.
— Ritchie Torres (@RitchieTorres) January 15, 2023
According to a report published by The New York Times, his attorney, Joe Murray, stated on Monday he would be in the process of interacting with a local lawyer to resolve this alleged grievance against his client.
Even if Santos chooses not to provide a defense in the Brazilian case, he will still be prosecuted in his absence. If he is found guilty, he faces the possibility of being sentenced to up to five years in jail, in addition to a fine.
The situation in Brazil, which dates back more than ten years, is not the only difficulty the Republican congressman-elect is dealing with in the days leading up to his inauguration.
An examination that was conducted and reported by the New York Times in December discovered a number of significant inconsistencies in Santos’s biography and resume.
Since then, the Republican candidate, who is now 34 years old, has revealed he lied about having Jewish ancestry, working for Wall Street institutions, and receiving a degree in finance.
According to court documents, Santos experienced financial problems, including getting evicted three times from 2014 to 2017 for failing to pay his rent. This contradicts the picture he presented of himself online as a prosperous personification of the American dream.
To the people of #NY03 I have my story to tell and it will be told next week. I want to assure everyone that I will address your questions and that I remain committed to deliver the results I campaigned on; Public safety, Inflation, Education & more.
Happy Holidays to all!
— George Santos (@Santos4Congress) December 22, 2022
Santos’s campaign finances are also being examined.
On December 22, 2022, Santos issued a message on Twitter in response to questions about the misleading assertions he made throughout his campaign.This article appeared in The Political Globe and has been published here with permission.