The father of Rep. Ami Bera, D-Elk Grove, pleaded guilty Tuesday in Sacramento federal court to two felony counts of election fraud involving the finances of his son’s campaign committee.
Babulal Bera admitted to U.S. District Judge Troy L. Nunley that during his son’s 2010 and 2012 campaigns for Congress he recruited friends, family members and acquaintances to make contributions to the committee and reimbursed them with his own money.
A plea agreement says $268,726 was contributed by the straw donors during the two campaigns. All but $5,326 coming directly or indirectly from Babulal Bera was given back to the donors.
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Talbert said that the investigation is ongoing but repeatedly noted that in the nearly 18 months of the probe no evidence was turned up “indicating that Congressman Bera nor any of his staff” were aware of Babulal Bera’s illegal shuffling of campaign contributions.