Andrew Gillum Wiki
Andrew Gillum Biography
Who is Andrew Gillum ?
Andrew Gillum, the 2018 Democratic candidate for governor of Florida, and a longtime adviser, were indicted in federal court Wednesday on fraud charges.
The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Florida announced charges against Gillum and Sharon Letterman-Hicks, a longtime adviser to Gillum and executive director of the National Coalition for Black Justice, after a grand jury returned an indictment of 21 charges.
The indictment alleges that between 2016 and 2019, Gillum and Letterman-Hicks illegally solicited funds under false pretenses. It also alleges that the couple used third parties to direct some of those funds to a company owned by Letterman-Hicks, who then funneled the funds to Gillum for his personal use.
Both Gillum and Letterman-Hicks face 19 counts of wire fraud. Gillum also faces a charge of making false statements to the FBI.
Gillum and Letterman-Hicks will make their initial appearance in federal court in Tallahassee on Wednesday afternoon.
In a statement, Gillum, the former mayor of Tallahassee, denied any wrongdoing and said the case against him was politically motivated.
“I have spent the last 20 years of my life in public service and I continue to fight for people,” Gillum said. “Every campaign I’ve run has been done with integrity. Make no mistake, this case is not legal, it is political.”
“Throughout my career I have always stood up for the people of Florida and spoke truth to power. There’s been a target on my back since I was mayor of Tallahassee. So they found nothing, and I have full confidence that my legal team will now prove my innocence.”
“The government was wrong today. The evidence in this case is clear and will show that Mr. Gillum is innocent of all charges. We hope to put this case to rest and give Andrew and his family peace of mind once and for all,” said Marc Elias, a prominent Democratic attorney and criminal defense attorney David Oscar Markus.
The fraud charges mark the latest blow to Gillum’s reputation. Once seen as a rising Democratic star in Florida, Gillum has faced controversy since he lost the 2018 gubernatorial race to Gov. Ron DeSantis.
He largely retired from public life in 2020 after he was found in a Miami Beach hotel room with a male companion who was being treated for an apparent overdose. Gillum said he was abusing alcohol at the time to cope with his loss to DeSantis and checked himself into a rehab facility.
Gillum also faced a years-long FBI corruption investigation stemming from his time as mayor of Tallahassee. Although he did not face criminal charges, he ultimately agreed to pay a $5,000 fine.