Former California congressman indicted on wire fraud and money laundering charges
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Former California congressman indicted on wire fraud and money laundering charges

The Department of Justice (DOJ) Tuesday unsealed a 28-count indictment against former California congressman TJ Cox. Cox was indicted for 10 counts of wire fraud, 11 counts of money laundering, 5 counts of wire fraud affecting financial institutions, and one count of contributions in the name of another. The bulk of the charges come from Cox’s schemes involving a tax credit company and an almond processing company.

Cox committed fraud through a tax credit company that he was a co-owner and managing member of. He secretly opened a bank account under the company’s name and diverted money into it that he used mainly for personal expenses. Cox would direct the company’s clients to make wire transfers into this secret account instead of the company’s main operation account. Cox caused more than $1 million in losses to borrowers and his company through this scheme.

Cox also committed fraud through his almond processing company for which he was a partial owner. Cox again opened a secret bank account which he used to divert money to himself and his other business ventures. Cox would also obtain loans from investors but would never pay them back in full as promised. Through this scheme, Cox caused more the $750,000 in losses from lenders and investors of the almond processing company.

The indictment also says he obtained a construction loan for a recreation area in Fresno that later went into default causing a loss of $1.28 million.

If convicted Cox faces a total of 50 years in prison and a fine of $1.5 million.