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Former California congressman arrested on fraud charges

Former California Democratic Rep. T.J. Cox was arrested Tuesday on charges of wire fraud, the Justice Department announced. Photo by Eric Connolly/U.S. House Office of Photography/House Creative Services
Former California Democratic Rep. T.J. Cox was arrested Tuesday on charges of wire fraud, the Justice Department announced. Photo by Eric Connolly/U.S. House Office of Photography/House Creative Services

Aug. 16 (UPI) -- Former California Democratic Rep. T.J. Cox was arrested Tuesday morning by the FBI on charges of wire fraud and money laundering, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Cox allegedly obtained a $1.5 million construction loan to develop a recreation area, by falsely claiming that he had a guarantor for the loan.

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"Cox falsely represented that one of his affiliated companies would guarantee the loan, and submitted a fabricated board resolution which falsely stated that at a meeting on a given date all company owners agreed to guarantee the Granite Park loan," U.S. Attorney Phillip Talbert said.

"No meeting took place, and the other owners did not agree to back the loan. The loan later went into default causing a loss of more than $1.28 million," Talbert said.

While running for office in 2017, Cox also allegedly arranged for more than $25,000 in straw donations to his campaign by having members of his family donate money.

Cox won his 2018 election, but narrowly lost in 2020.

If Cox is convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for wire fraud an money laundering, according to the justice department.

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