Rylen Judith Brees, who is being investigated by the FBI, is not a ‘national security threat’
Rylene Judith Broes, a former Republican congressional candidate in Minnesota, was indicted on Friday on charges that she illegally received millions in campaign contributions and used her federal office to benefit herself and her family through private businesses.
She is the second former GOP lawmaker to be indicted on charges related to their work on behalf of foreign entities.
The indictment also accuses her of failing to report more than $1.7 million in donations from foreign entities to her campaign, failing to file federal income tax returns for her work on overseas entities and failing to disclose the existence of her business interests.
Prosecutors allege that in 2015, Broes and her husband, former Rep. Paul Broes of Illinois, received millions of dollars in campaign donations and loans from a Russian bank linked to a former Ukrainian president, Viktor Yanukovych.
The couple allegedly received $500,000 in cash payments from the bank.
Rylene Broes was arrested in Minnesota in February, along with her husband Paul, who pleaded guilty to the charges earlier this year.
She has not been charged in connection with the charges.
The indictment charges her with illegally accepting donations from a foreign entity and failing in her duties as a federal employee.
It accuses her and her wife of failing in their duties as agents of the foreign government and failing not to file the necessary federal income taxes.
In January, a federal grand jury indicted Paul Broe on a federal charge of making a false statement to a federal official about foreign financial dealings, including that he was the owner of a Russian company that was controlled by former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, and the Broes also allegedly received thousands of dollars from the Ukrainian government.
She has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
“We are very grateful to the FBI and prosecutors in Minnesota for taking this extraordinary step to charge Rylena Judith, a longtime Republican congressional hopeful in Minnesota who has been under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and federal investigators for her improper use of campaign funds and political influence in the 2016 presidential election,” the Brose family said in a statement.
In the indictment, prosecutors said the former congressman used his political office to obtain loans and campaign contributions from a business owned by a Ukrainian oligarch linked to the ousted president, including payments of more than half a million dollars to a firm controlled by Mr. Yanukovych.
As part of the probe, the Justice Department indicted two former senior members of the U and Ukrainian intelligence agencies on criminal charges related the alleged payments.
The charges allege the Broses, as well as two former former employees of the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), used their political office and their federal jobs to enrich themselves and their family members.
BREES was appointed to the House Foreign Affairs Committee in January 2017.
Her campaign had no comment on the indictment.
Broes is scheduled to appear in federal court in Minneapolis on Monday, June 7, for a preliminary hearing on charges against her.