Dinesh D’Souza is in the news again today, which is not unusual for the conservative but controversial author. This time however, the writer may have to pay for it.
D’Souza was arraigned on Friday in the U.S District Court in Manhattan, on charges that he violated campaign financial laws during the 2012 New York Senate campaign. According to the Associated Press, federal prosecutors are alleging that D’Souza directed $20,000 in illegal campaign contributions toward the campaign of long time friend and fellow Dartmouth Graduate, Wendy Long. He is alleged to have done so, by directing two of his own relatives to contribute $10,000 each from them and their spouses, to Long’s campaign. That amount is twice the allowable limit. It is further alleged that Dinesh D’Souza promised his relatives swift reimbursement.
This donation also forced the campaign to incorrectly represent the donations given to them; though at this time no other members of the senatorial campaign are being brought up on charges. According to Prosecutor Carrie Cohen, Long “informed the government that Mr. D’Souza lied about the source of those ($10,000) donations.” Cohen informed Judge Richard Berman at the arraignment on Friday that Long, as well as the relatives who donated the funds, have agreed to testify against Mr. Dinesh D’Souza.
Long and D’Souza’s relationship extends many years, going back to their time at Dartmouth college where they worked together on the Dartmouth Review. The Review is famous for its outspoken stance on political, social, and other controversial topics. Consequently, it is believed that Dinesh D’Souza embraced his vitriolic career, while writing for the Review. During Long’s recent campaign, D’Souza was a staunch supporter, even being listed as a co-chair at one of many fundraising events.
D’Souza plead not guilty, and was released on a $500,000 bond Friday. Since that time, despite being again in the news, Dinesh D’Souza has declined to comment on the situation. According to Manhattan U.S attorney Preet Bhara, “the FBI takes a zero tolerance approach to corruption of the electoral process,” calling D’Souza’s action a “serious violation of federal campaign laws.”
Dinesh D’Souza’s own spokesman and attorney Benjamin Brafman, released a statement in an attempt to counter Ms. Bhara’s comments. “Mr. D’Souza did not act with any corrupt or criminal intent, whatsoever.” Bhara then continued “D’Souza’s efforts to help a friend running for office was at most, an act of misguided friendship.”
D’Souza made headlines most recently by stepping down from the presidency of King’s College — a small evangelical college in the Manhattan area — after being accused of marital misconduct. His relationship with a right wing blogger named Denise Joseph, was made public after the couple attended a religious conference in South Carolina. They announced their engagement to each other, despite both still being married to other people. Regardless of all of that, Dinesh D’Souza is perhaps best known for his time as policy adviser to former President Ronald Reagan, and his many books. Including such titles as “The Roots of Obama’s Rage,” “The Enemy at Home” and “The End of Racism.”
The charges of corruption against D’Souza, which have thrust him into the news yet again, were made after a routine check by the FBI. They are tasked with looking into campaign filings to the FEC, made by a variety of candidates from the 2012 elections. If found guilty, D’Souza will face up to seven years in prison.
By Chris Chisam
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