Jury begins deliberations in trial of 2 ex-aides to Ron Paul

AP News
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Posted: Oct 20, 2015 5:09 PM

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A jury has begun deliberations in a federal trial of two aides to Ron Paul's 2012 presidential campaign who are accused of secretly paying a state lawmaker to endorse their boss.

Twelve jurors began deliberating Tuesday in Des Moines, Iowa, in the trial of Jesse Benton and Dimitri Kesari.

Benton, a former campaign chairman, faces one count of making false statements. Kesari, an ex-deputy campaign manager, faces five charges including conspiracy and obstruction. Both have pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutors say the men concealed payments to former Iowa Sen. Kent Sorenson after he jumped from the Michele Bachmann campaign to the Paul campaign. Defense attorneys have questioned the authenticity of presented evidence and the credibility of Sorenson, who testified in court.

Attorneys for both sides finished closing arguments Tuesday.