NEW YORK (AP) — A former fundraiser for U.S. Representative George Santos was indicted Wednesday on federal charges that he impersonated a senior congressional aide while soliciting contributions to the New York Republican’s campaign.
Sam Miele was charged with four counts of wire fraud and aggravated identity theft in an alleged scheme to defraud donors and obtain funds under false pretenses. Prosecutors said Miele posed as a senior aide to a member of the House with leadership responsibilities, using a fake name and email address to mislead at least a dozen potential donors.
Santos was not charged in the case involving Miele.
The indictment did not name the person who was impersonated, but the details of the allegations match multiple news reports identifying the aide as Dan Myer, now retired as House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s longtime chief of staff, R-Calif, who was leader of the minority at the time.
Attempts to reach Miele by telephone were not immediately successful. A phone number in his name rang unanswered. Myer did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Santos’ office did not respond to a request for comment.
Federal prosecutors said Miele admitted to “falsifying my identity to a major donor” in a letter sent to Santos last Sept. 26, a few months before Santos was elected. Miele said he was “high risk, high reward in everything I do,” according to the indictment.
Miele earned a 15% commission on every contribution he raised, prosecutors said.
The indictment comes three months after Santos was arrested on charges of bank fraud, money laundering, theft of public funds and making false statements to Congress. He pleaded not guilty and insisted he has no intention of resigning from Congress.