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U.S. files fraud case against former congressman Jesse Jackson Jr.

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation - Fri, 15 Feb 2013 21:36 GMT
Author: Reuters
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WASHINGTON, Feb 15 (Reuters) - U.S. prosecutors filed criminal charges of fraud and conspiracy on Friday against former Chicago congressman Jesse Jackson Jr., accusing him and an unnamed co-conspirator of misusing ${esc.dollar}750,000 in campaign funds.

Though Jackson, the son of the famed civil rights leader, did not immediately enter any plea, his lawyers released a statement from him admitting mistakes as the charges were filed in U.S. District Court in Washington.

"I offer no excuses for my conduct and I fully accept my responsibility for the improper decisions and mistakes I have made," said Jackson, a Democrat.

Prosecutors filed a related charge against his wife, Sandi Jackson, a former Chicago alderman, accusing her of knowingly filing false tax returns.

Under federal sentencing guidelines, Jesse Jackson Jr. faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and she faces three years in prison if convicted, but defendants often are sentenced to much less than the maximum.

Jackson resigned his congressional seat last Nov. 21 and said that treatment for bipolar disorder, a condition marked by extreme mood swings, was incompatible with serving his constituents. (Reporting by David Ingram; Editing by Will Dunham)

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