US opens criminal inquiry of resigning congressman

Source: US congressman, who has resigned, under investigation for possible criminal violations

US opens criminal inquiry of resigning congressman

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. Justice Department has launched a formal criminal investigation into the office and campaign expenses of resigning congressman as well as his personal business dealings with political donors, a person familiar with the case told The Associated Press on Friday.

The government was convening a federal jury in Illinois, the home state of Republican Rep. Adam Schock, and the FBI has begun issuing subpoenas to compel people close to the congressman to testify, the person said. The person spoke only on grounds of anonymity because the person wasn't authorized to publicly discuss the case. The jury was hearing testimony in early April, according to the subpoenas.

Schock abruptly resigned on Tuesday, citing a "heavy heart," following six weeks of revelations about his business deals and lavish spending on trips, mileage reimbursements and office decor in the style of "Downton Abbey."

Schock, 33, a young, media-savvy Republican, said in a statement earlier this week that the constant questions about his spending and business dealings made it impossible to serve effectively as congressman.

The questions raised have included Associated Press investigations of his real estate transactions, air travel and Instagram use. On Monday, the AP confirmed that the Office of Congressional Ethics had reached out to Schock's associates as it apparently began an investigation.

The leader of the House, Speaker John Boehner, was not informed of Schock's resignation before it was announced but has said he supports the decision.

Updated : 2021-04-16 18:59 GMT+08:00