Feb 1, 2023 - Politics & Policy

FBI investigating Santos' alleged role in service dog fundraiser scheme

Rep. George Santos Tuesday in Washington. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The FBI is investigating embattled Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) for his alleged role in a fundraising scheme for a disabled U.S. Navy veteran’s dying service dog, Politico reports.

The big picture: Santos is facing a myriad of allegations and several investigations after he was accused of making sweeping fabrications on the campaign trail. Amid ongoing pressure, Santos temporarily recused himself from his committee assignments Tuesday.

Driving the news: Veteran Richard Osthoff was contacted by two FBI agents Wednesday on behalf of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of New York, he told Politico.

  • Osthoff, of New Jersey, said he gave the agents text messages from 2016 with Santos.

Catch up quick: Osthoff spoke to media last month saying Santos, who he knew by a different name, promised to raise money for his dog's lifesaving surgery through GoFundMe but then took off with $3,000.

  • Santos told news outlet Semafor last month that the story was "fake" and that he had "no clue who this is."

What they're saying: "I’m glad to get the ball rolling with the big-wigs," Osthoff said Wednesday per Politico. "I was worried that what happened to me was too long ago to be prosecuted."

  • Santos' office and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of New York did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.
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