The Feds Think Bob Brady’s Email Likely Contains “Evidence of Crimes”
Newly unsealed court documents reveal that the FBI executed a search warrant on the congressman’s AOL account earlier this month.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
Bob Brady might be in trouble.
Last Friday, while nobody was paying attention, a federal judge in Philadelphia unsealed documents in a criminal matter that had been filed back on November 1st. The filing was an application for a search warrant for BOBCONGRESS@AOL.com, an AOL email account belonging to the 10-term Philly congressman.
In the application, the FBI stated that it has probable cause to believe that Brady has committed crimes related to conspiracy, wire fraud, and campaign contribution violations, among other alleged offenses. And the FBI wanted to see all of the emails connected to his AOL account, because the agency believes that the account will bear evidence of said crimes. Judge Carol Wells approved the warrant and it was executed the same day. It is unknown what evidence was found during the search, if any. (See embedded documents below.)
This summer, federal prosecutors claimed that the Brady campaign bought off his 2012 political opponent, former municipal judge Jimmie Moore. Moore has since pleaded guilty to filing a false campaign finance report, and said that the campaign gave him $90,000 to drop out of the election. Carolyn Cavaness, a past aide to Brady’s rival, also admitted that she was involved in the payoff and pleaded guilty to making false statements.
And then last month, two of Brady’s strategists were charged with conspiracy and other offenses in connection with the alleged scheme. Federal prosecutors accused Ken Smukler and Donald “D.A.” Jones of paying Moore to stop his bid and then hiding it in finance reports. They both pleaded not guilty.
Brady, 72, has been the boss of the Philadelphia Democratic Party for more than 30 years. He has forged such close relationships with party members that no Democrat has announced yet that they will launch a primary challenge against him in 2018.
Brady is also the ranking Democrat on the Committee on House Administration, which oversees federal elections, among other things.
Brady lawyer Jim Eisenhower told Philadelphia magazine that “the congressman is not a target of this investigation and he has not been charged with anything.” He added that “there’s nothing new here.”