Representative George Santos, a Republican from New York, arrives for a vote at the United States Capitol in Washington, DC, U.S., Tuesday, January 31, 2023.
Al-Draco | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Scandal-ridden Rep. George Santos, RN.Y., has been charged with criminal charges by the Justice Department, NBC News reported Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The nature of the federal charges against the freshman congressman, who admitted to lying about his background, was not immediately known. Santos is scheduled to appear in federal court in Long Island, New York, on Wednesday, sources told NBC.
Santos’ attorney and spokesperson did not immediately respond to CNBC’s requests for comment. A spokeswoman for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York declined to comment.
News of the charges came just weeks after Santos announced his 2024 re-election campaign.
Santos has come under scrutiny for several scandals that defined his brief stint in Congress.
Before being sworn in, Santos admitted he lied about his credentials and work experience. He denied committing any crimes. But he would be under several investigations as authorities at many levels of government investigate his campaign finances and other matters.
Rep. Mike Lawler, another New York GOP freshman, gave NBC a word. reaction to the charges against Santos: “Resign”.
Lawler is the latest Republican to call for Santos’ resignation. But Santos has so far pushed back against his critics, saying only voters in his district should decide whether or not he remains in Congress. Some polls have revealed that Santos District voters see it overwhelmingly unfavorably across party lines.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., who has a very tight majority and can’t afford to lose more than a handful of votes, didn’t join his colleagues’ calls for Santos to step down. .
Asked about Santos’ legal issues on Tuesday, McCarthy said, “I will look into the charges.”
In March, a House Ethics Committee appointed a subcommittee to investigate potential illegal activities by Santos’ congressional campaign. The subcommittee is also looking into a sexual harassment allegation made earlier this year by Derek Myers, a reporter who says Santos groped him in his office while the two men were alone going through voter mail. Santos denied the allegation.
CNN first reported the charges earlier Tuesday afternoon.