IRS, FBI seeking financial records of Florida Republican Party
by AccountingWEB on
The Republican Party of Florida has been served with a subpoena seeking financial records related to $500,000 in charges on American Express credit cards issued by the party.
The probe is wide-ranging and includes the FBI, IRS, and the U.S. Attorney’s office, The Miami Herald reported. An audit in September showed that more than $500,000 of the funds were used for expenses not related to business.
Although the subpoena was served on Election Day, party officials did not learn about it until the Herald’s story one month later, prompting GOP Chairman John Thrasher to tell fellow Republicans that the target is former, not current, party leaders.
He suggested the FBI and U.S. Attorney’s Office were interested in former House Speaker Ray Sansom, who faces grand theft charges related to $6 million added to the 2007 state budget for a building at Destin Airport that political friends wanted to use as a hangar. Sansom has pleaded not guilty.
"We understood where the emphasis of the subpoena was going," said Thrasher in the St. Petersburg Times. "We didn't think the subpoena rose to the level of importance considering everything else that has been requested from this same United States Attorney."
The party also is reeling from accusations leveled at ousted GOP leader Jim Greer, who pleaded guilty to defrauding donors and the party by directing donations to a dummy corporation. The Greer and Samson investigations, along with other alleged financial wrongdoings by GOP fundraisers, have federal investigators interviewing lawmakers, donors, and consultants throughout the state.
Thrasher was elected chairman after vowing to bring transparency and open communication to the party, but his failure to immediately inform party leaders about the subpoena angered some.
Tony DiMatteo, Pinellas state committee member, told the Times, "I'm just upset that there's no transparency at the party level after it was promised. . . . It's like The Who song [Won't Get Fooled Again]: 'Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.' " DiMatteo is seeking to replace Thrasher when he steps down in January.
You may like these other stories...
Camp Hopes Estate Tax Will Be on Its Way OutAn article in Bloomberg said that Republicans are considering voting this year to repeal the U.S. estate tax, according to House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp (R.-Mich.). He...
Senate Takes Different Approach from House for Highway and Bridge FundEarlier this week, according to a New York Times article, the Senate agreed to fill the coffers of the fund that pays for highway and bridge repairs with...
There it stands, your client's 100-year-old, rickety, vermin-infested barn or former hotel or whatever the darn thing once was. And she's considering what to do with it. There are two words that can help her decide...
Upcoming CPE Webinars
FRF for SMEs Series--Measurement and Disclosure Principles for various Consolidations and Business Combinations, Part 4B
This webcast will focus on accounting and disclosure policies for various types of consolidations and business combinations.
In this session we'll review best practices for how to generate interest in your firm’s services.
Meet budgets and client expectations using project management skills geared toward the unique challenges faced by CPAs. Kristen Rampe will share how knowing the keys to structuring and executing a successful project can make the difference between success and repeated failures.
Excel spreadsheets are often akin to the American Wild West, where users can input anything they want into any worksheet cell. Excel's Data Validation feature allows you to restrict user inputs to selected choices, but there are many nuances to the feature that often trip users up.