Jury Convicts Braddock On All Three Counts
A jury deliberated for less than three hours on Tuesday before finding Robert Braddock Jr., the former finance director of Chris Donovan’s 2012 congressional campaign, guilty on all three counts of conspiring to hide the source of $27,500 in campaign donations.
Braddock, 34, was found guilty of conspiring to make false statements to the Federal Elections Commission, accepting more than $10,000 in federal campaign contributions made by persons in the names of others, and causing false reports to be filed with the FEC.
The charges carry a maximum of 12 years in prison and each count carries a $250,000 fine. Braddock is scheduled to be sentenced Aug. 13.
Defense attorney Frank Riccio II said he was disappointed by the verdict. The less than three hours of deliberation by the jury was a “surprise,” he said.
Riccio said his options going forward include an appeal and filing post-trial motions.
He maintained that it was “almost certain” that Braddock was convicted based on his association with others.
“The trial was not ultimately supposed to be about Chris Donovan and others, but it became that,” Riccio said. “There were days of this trial that I thought Chris Donovan was sitting next to me rather than Mr. Braddock. I do believe there was a spillover.”
Braddock was a political fundraiser who came to Connecticut to work on Donovan’s campaign after winning a congressional campaign in Pennsylvania. Braddock also worked on Harry Taylor’s congressional campaign in North Carolina in 2008 and on Mary Norwood’s Atlanta mayoral campaign in 2009.The former U.S. Marine who worked briefly for whitehouse.com was an unknown commodity in Connecticut political circles before his arrest last May.
Braddock was one of eight people charged with conspiracy last summer. Seven, including Donovan’s campaign manager, pleaded guilty to charges of trying to hide the source of the donations. Braddock was the only one to go to trial.
Riccio rested his case Monday without calling any witnesses or putting on any evidence in the week-long trial. He declined to comment about his trial strategy.
Prior to the jury issuing its verdict Tuesday, Donovan read a statement to the media outside the courthouse.