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Saturday, July 2, 2022

Link Emerges Between Indicted U.S Congressman and Eko Atlantic’s Chagoury

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There is a link between U.S. Representative Jeff Fortenberry a Republican indicted this week for lying to federal authorities about a $30,000 campaign contribution and Nigerian businessman Gilbert Chagoury, owner of the multibillion dollar Eko Atlantic project in Lagos.

Fortenberry was indicted by a federal grand jury after being accused of lying to investigators multiple times during a federal investigation surrounding a donation to the congressman’s 2016 re-election campaign by a foreign billionaire.

According to court documents, Lebanese-Nigerian businessman Gilbert Chagoury arranged for $30,000 to be contributed towards Fortenberry’s re-election through other individuals during a Los Angeles fundraiser.

Under federal law, foreign nationals are prohibited from contributing to elections in the United States, and it is illegal for the source of campaign contributions to be hidden by using third-party conduits to funnel the money.

It’s also unlawful for a federal candidate to knowingly receive foreign donations or contributions through conduits.

Chagoury entered into a deferred prosecution agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in 2019 and admitted to providing illegal contributions to four American candidates.

The co-host of Fortenberry’s 2016 fundraiser informed special agents about the Chagoury contributions and began working with federal authorities in September 2016.

During the investigation, they examined whether the congressman received the funds and whether he knew about it.

In the spring of 2018, Fortenberry contacted the co-host to organize another fundraiser when the individual allegedly told him about the illegal campaign contributions provided by an associate of Chagoury.

The congressman is accused of making false and misleading statements to investigators during interviews about the funds despite being warned it’s a crime to lie to the federal government.

Each of the three felonies Fortenberry’s faces carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison. The congressman agreed to appear for a 1 p.m. virtual arraignment on October 20 in United States District Court in Los Angeles.

Eko Atlantic is an entire new $6 billion coastal city being built on Victoria Island adjacent to Lagos, Nigeria.

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