Federal Bureau of Investigation raids a GOP consulting firm in Maryland for allegedly scamming donors

  • Federal Bureau of Investigation raids a GOP consulting firm in Maryland for allegedly scamming donors

Federal Bureau of Investigation raids a GOP consulting firm in Maryland for allegedly scamming donors

"WINNING REPUBLICAN CAMPAIGNS FOR MORE THAN 1O YEARS" reads a banner across the top of Strategic Campaign Group's website.

GOP strategists Kelley Rogers, who founded the firm told local newspaper Capital Gazette that six Federal Bureau of Investigation agents had raided the office to gather computer files and documents related to the firm's direct mail and fundraising practices. In 2014, the firm was sued by former Virginia attorney general Ken Cuccinelli.

"This is a political fundraising swamp", he said.

Rogers told reporters that his firm settled a lawsuit brought by the Cuccinelli campaign after he lost the governor's race to Terry McAuliffe.

Rogers' firm also did campaign work for Maryland Republican lawmakers.

Strategic Campaign Group's website describes the firms as "a full-service Republican political consulting firm able to design, manage, and execute every aspect of political and fundraising campaigns for Republican politicians, conservative political action committees, and conservative organizations of all kinds". The firm's website said one of its principals was formerly associated with a firm operated by Paul Manafort, who is the former Trump campaign manager whose business dealings with Russian Federation are under intense scrutiny. It outlines Strategic Campaign Group's fraught legal past.

Since news of the raid broke, Kipke and state Senate Minority Leader J.B. Jennings of Baltimore County have both said they will not use the firm until the company's legal issues are resolved.

Cuccinelli said the defendants raised $2.2 million from donors while pretending to be campaigning for him. The publication details how Strategic Campaign Group made calls on behalf of and controlled the Conservative Strike Force PAC, which Cuccinelli accused of pulling wool over his followers" eyes via a "malicious "Scam PAC' operation".

Cuccinelli told The Associated Press he has not been interviewed by law enforcement officials. "Any cleaning up of these practices would be good for our political system".