DOJ: Ex-Rand Paul Aide Funneled Money From Russia

The Insider reports:

A former campaign staffer for US Sen. Rand Paul has been charged with channeling money from Russia into the 2016 presidential election, the US Department of Justice said Monday.

In an unsealed indictment, dated September 9, prosecutors allege Jesse Benton “conspired to illegally funnel thousands of dollars of foreign money from a Russian foreign national” into the campaign.

In October 2016, Benton received a $100,000 wire transfer from the unnamed Russian national, the indictment states, promising him that he would get to “meet a celebrity” at a fundraiser in Philadelphia on September 22, 2016.

The Independent reports:

Both men are accused of passing off the donations as payments for “consulting work.” Mr Benton reportedly kept $75,000 of the donation, while the rest was given to the candidate.

Mr Benton was previously convicted of campaign finance fraud relating to Mr Paul’s 2012 presidential campaign.

He was sentenced just says before the Philadelphia fundraiser and was sentenced to two years of probation and a $10,000 fine. After his conviction, Mr Trump pardoned Mr Benton.

Rather obviously, the “candidate” was Trump.