The charges include conspiracy, wire fraud, and making false statements.
According to a press release issued by the U.S. Attorney’s office, both Gillum and Sharon Janet Lettman-Hicks are named in the case.
“The Indictment alleges that between 2016 and 2019, defendants Gillum and Lettman-Hicks conspired to commit wire fraud, by unlawfully soliciting and obtaining funds from various entities and individuals through false and fraudulent promises and representations that the funds would be used for a legitimate purpose. The Indictment further alleges the defendants used third parties to divert a portion of those funds to a company owned by Lettman-Hicks, who then fraudulently provided the funds, disguised as payroll payments, to Gillum for his personal use. Both defendants are charged with 19 counts of wire fraud. Gillum is also charged with making false statements to agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The initial appearance is scheduled for Wednesday, June 22, 2022, at 2:00 pm, at the United States Courthouse in Tallahassee in the Magistrate Judge’s Courtroom on the main floor.
The maximum terms of imprisonment for the offenses are as follows:
- 5 years: Making False Statements
- 20 years: Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud
- 20 years: Wire Fraud
The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Stephen M. Kunz and Andrew J. Grogan.”
Gillum unsuccessfully ran for Florida Governor against Ron DeSantis in 2018. Prior to that, he was Mayor of Tallahassee and served on the City Council. Gillum has denied wrongdoing and issued the following statement today in defense of his actions.
“I have spent the last 20 years of my life in public service and continue to fight for the people. Every campaign I’ve run has been done with integrity. Make no mistake that this case is not legal, it is political. Throughout my career, I have always stood up for the people of Florida and have spoken truth to power. There’s been a target on my back ever since I was the mayor of Tallahassee. They found nothing then, and I have full confidence that my legal team will prove my innocence now”.
The charges laid out by the U.S Attorney’s office detail how Gillum did not properly disclose gifts that he received during his time on the City Council and tenure as Mayor, despite being required to do so as a publicly elected official.
The indictment also alleges that Gillum lied to an undercover FBI agent who posed as a property developer, willing to make monthly payments to Gillum in exchange for public support of his proposed projects.