Former U.S. Rep Steve Stockman accused of violating federal election laws

Former U.S. Rep Steve Stockman accused of violating federal election laws

HOUSTON, TX (KTRE) - Former U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman, who represented the 36th Congressional District, made an appearance in a Houston federal court Friday in response to allegations he conspired to violate federal election laws by funneling hundreds of thousands of dollars through a non-profit organization for his own personal use during his last term in office, according to KPRC in Houston.

The KPRC story stated that according to the complaint, Stockman set up a non-profit called Life Without Limits in Las Vegas in 2011.

"A single contributor donated $350,000 to the charity, which Stockman then allegedly funneled back to himself through donations made by his employees," the KPRC story stated.

According to Stockman's Facebook page, he served two stints in the U.S. House of Representatives, one from 1995 to 1997, and the most recent term was from 2013 to 2015, when he represented the 36th Congressional District of Texas. The 36th Congressional District includes Newton, Jasper, Tyler, Polk, Orange, Hardin, Liberty, and Chambers counties, along with portions of southeast Harris County, according to the website for the current representative for that district, Brian Babin, (R-Woodville).

Stockman, a Republican and a Tea Party favorite, was brought into the Houston federal court in shackles and handcuffs, the KPRC story stated.

"As Stockman stood before the judge Thursday afternoon, prosecutors alleged that the former congressman had conspired with two former employees to funnel hundreds of thousands of dollars to his personal use," the KPRC story stated.

The federal judge presiding over the case set Stockman's bail amount at $25,000, the KPRC story stated.

The "Texas Tribune" also did a story on the allegations against Stockman and that story stated that the allegations stem from a sworn statement from an FBI agent that was unsealed Thursday. Stockman is also accused of making false statements to the Federal Election Commission, the "Texas Tribune" story stated.

"Stockman has previously faced questions about his ties to Life Without Limits," the "Texas Tribune" story stated. "The group was set up in 2011 in Nevada with the goal of helping people who have dealt with trauma in their lives. A year later, Stockman opened a number of bank accounts under his name doing business as Life Without Limits, according to the statement. "

The KPRC story stated that Stockman resigned from his U.S. congressional to run against Senator John Cornyn in the 2014 Republican primary.

To read the full KPRC story, click here. Click on this link to read the "Texas Tribune" story.

Copyright 2017 KTRE. All rights reserved.