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Nebraska congressman’s campaign finance case back in court day after re-election announcement

Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) is accused of concealing campaign finance information and lying to investigators after he accepted a donation in 2016.
Published: Jan. 11, 2022 at 1:31 PM CST
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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - A California federal judge heard two motions from Congressman Jeff Fortenberry’s legal team Tuesday: to compel evidence from federal prosecutors and to suppress statements from investigators.

Fortenberry is being accused of concealing campaign finance information and making false statements to federal authorities after, they say, he accepted $30,000 of illegal campaign funds during a 2016 election event in California.

Ahead of the trial scheduled for next month, the defense wanted the judge to compel prosecutors to turn over evidence that they induced testimony from Fortenberry. Prosecutors said no such evidence exists.

Fortenberry’s defense team also moved to suppress comments he made to investigators, claiming the Department of Justice misrepresented Fortenberry’s role in the investigation.

The judge said he will make his decisions soon.

This hearing came just one day after Fortenberry announced he’s running for re-election.

“I’m here to announce to you first, our friends, that I am seeking re-election to the United States House of Representatives,” Fortenberry said in a YouTube video released Monday morning. In the video, he did not address his lingering legal battle.

Fortenberry’s trial is scheduled to begin on Feb. 15. The judge noted, though, the court has suspended jury trials. It’s unclear if that suspension will be extended, or if the trial will be postponed.

The Gray Television Washington News Bureau reached out to Fortenberry’s team. They did not provide any additional comment.

Currently, two Democrats are running for Fortenberry’s Congressional seat, Nebraska state Sen. Patty Pansing Brooks and Joseph Zakaria.

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