Top Democrat tech aide Imran Awan, who attempted to flee the country when allegations of congressional server tampering and theft came to light, pleaded guilty to bank fraud Tuesday morning in federal court. He was arrested in July 17 at the airport, where he planned to fly to Pakistan.
An aide for Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., has been arrested for attempting to flee the country and charged with bank fraud, officials said.
Imran Awan, 37, was arrested on Monday by FBI agents and U.S. Capitol Police at Dulles International Airport trying to fly to Lahore, Pakistan.
Awan was arraigned in U.S. District Court on Tuesday with one count of bank fraud, a federal offense, and he pleaded not guilty.
Officials said Awan and his wife, Hina Alvi, defrauded the Congressional Federal Credit Union for $165,000 by lying on a home equity loan application, according to federal court documents.
Awan and four of his associates, including family members, worked as IT specialists for dozens of Democratic lawmakers until they were banned from the computer network in February 2017 for allegedly violating House security rules. The ensuing investigation attracted aggressive coverage by conservative media outlets — led by the Daily Caller — and prompted calls from Trump to prosecute Awan, whom the president referred to in one tweet as the “Pakistani mystery man.”
And where we are now:
The House IG found that more than 100 congressional computers were set up to allow non-staffers to access them. It was marked URGENT and said all locks the Awans had access to needed to be changed. Dem staff told IG of crimes. How did all of this go away, and why? https://t.co/v4wBwv84JT— Luke Rosiak (@lukerosiak) July 2, 2018
Key question reporters should ask tomorrow: the House had evidence of procurement fraud, cyber security violations, & the disappearance of a key server 1 year ago. What happened between then and the lack of prosecution now? Even after Awan also left DWS' laptop in a phone booth? https://t.co/v4wBwv84JT— Luke Rosiak (@lukerosiak) July 2, 2018
NEW: An "urgent" memo from Congress' top cop itemizes “numerous and egregious violations of House IT security” by members of the Awan family, including using Congress members’ usernames and “the unauthorized storage of sensitive House information outside the House." https://t.co/v4wBwv84JT— Luke Rosiak (@lukerosiak) July 3, 2018
According to prosecutors, "the Government has found no evidence [Awan] illegally removed House data from the House network or from House Members’ offices, stole the House Democratic Caucus Server, stole or destroyed House information technology equipment, or improperly accessed or transferred government information, including classified or sensitive information.”