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North Carolina Republican Party chairman charged in corruption scheme
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North Carolina Republican Party chairman charged in corruption scheme

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Tuesday that it brought bribery and corruption charges against North Carolina Republican Party Chairman Robert Hayes for his role in a corruption scheme involving independent expenditure accounts and improper campaign contributions.

The DOJ charged three others for their roles in the scheme, including founder and Chairman of Eli Global, LLC and the owner of Global Bankers Insurance Group Greg Lindberg, Lindberg’s consultant John Gray, and Chairman of a Chatham County political party and Eli Global executive John Palermo.

The investigation began last January after the Commissioner of the North Carolina Department of Insurance (NCDOI) reported the potential criminal acts to federal law enforcement. Hayes and the other defendants allegedly tried to bribe the Commissioner with millions of dollars in campaign contributions to take action favorable to Lindberg, including removal of “NCDOI’s Senior Deputy Commissioner, who was responsible for overseeing regulation and the periodic examination of GBIG.” Hayes is alleged to have transferred $250,000 from Lindberg’s contribution to Hayes while Chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party.

The case was filed in the US District Court for the Western District of North Carolina.