A Feb. 15 trial date is canceled for U.S. Representative Jeff Fortenberry on allegations that he lied to federal agents about the source of a campaign contribution to a 2016 fundraiser in California.
The United States District Court for the Central District of California, where the Nebraska congressman is on trial, has suspended all jury trials through February 28 due to an increase in COVID-19 cases there. -low.
Last week, Los Angeles had seen a 93.9% increase in COVID cases over the previous two weeks, with more than 100 cases reported by district court, probation and pretrial workers.
During a state hearing on Tuesday, Judge Stanley Blumenfeld Jr. asked government counsel to prepare a proposed order outlining the grounds for the court to exclude the delay from the trial’s fast clock, the period during which they must judge him.
In October, a Los Angeles grand jury indicted Fortenberry on two counts of making false statements to federal agents and one count of seeking to conceal the source of $30,000 in “conducted” political contributions from a California fundraiser in 2016.
Gilbert Chagoury, a Lebanese-born Nigerian based in Paris, reportedly directed the donations to Fortenberry because of a shared interest in protecting Christians from persecution in the Middle East. It is illegal for foreigners to donate to US political campaigns.