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Former NY Congressman George Santos engages in plea deal talks amidst 23 felony charges

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Former New York Congressman George Santos is currently in negotiations for a plea deal with federal prosecutors, as revealed in a proposed agenda filed by the U.S. Attorney’s office in Brooklyn ahead of Tuesday’s case status conference. Santos faces a total of 23 felony charges, including wire fraud, illegal transactions, false statements, and identity theft.

The trial, initially tentatively scheduled for September 2024, has faced repeated petitions from prosecutors for an earlier start. The latest update discloses ongoing plea negotiations between the government and Santos’s defense counsel, with both parties aiming to resolve the matter without proceeding to trial.

During Tuesday’s court appearance, a federal prosecutor expressed an expectation for the plea negotiation talks to continue. Simultaneously, Santos’s attorney urged the judge to maintain the existing trial date, a sentiment the judge inclined to support.

Santos, initially charged with 13 federal offenses in May, had 10 more charges added in an October indictment. Despite his earlier plea of not guilty, Santos was forcefully expelled from Congress following a House ethics report citing “substantial evidence” of financial misdeeds. These included alleged misuse of campaign funds for personal expenses, such as botox treatments, luxury purchases, and expenditures on OnlyFans.

Removed from office earlier this month, Santos has since made retaliatory allegations against former colleagues and launched a Cameo account for personalized video messages. In an interview with CBS News New York, Santos indicated that a plea deal is not off the table amidst the ongoing developments in his case.

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