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Thieves hit Secretary of State Gorbea’s campaign account; 2nd RI official targeted

Target 12

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Another high-profile campaign account has been the victim of a theft, Target 12 has confirmed.

Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea’s office said $15,000 was siphoned from her campaign account in what is believed to be the same scheme that targeted Cranston mayor and two-time gubernatorial candidate Allan Fung.

Gorbea saw media reports about the theft from Fung’s account and proactively reached out to Rhode Island State Police, who discovered her account had also been targeted.

R.I. State Police Major Timothy Sanzi said Gorbea’s campaigned reached out to them on July 17. The theft occurred on June 11.

Sanzi said the two cases are consistent with each other.

“The only difference is the Fung transaction occurred in New York and the Gorbea one the transaction occurred in Texas,” said Sanzi.

Sanzi said they notified the bank, J.P. Morgan, which has an investigative arm looking into the fraudulent transaction.

As Target 12 previously reported, Fung’s campaign treasurer and wife, Barbara Ann Fenton, said the theft “involved a phony paper check made out to an out-of-state company and deposited at an out-of-state federal credit union on June 18th, 2019.” The money was withdrawn in a single transaction.

Rhode Island State Police told Target 12 the alleged theft occurred in New York, where a criminal investigation is now underway.

According to campaign finance filings, Gorbea had just over $63,500 in her campaign account as of late March.

This story is developing. Check back for updates.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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