Fallout from Alleged Fraud by Campaign Treasurer Grows - NBC Southern California

Fallout from Alleged Fraud by Campaign Treasurer Grows

More and more Democrats are learning how much of their money may be missing, as the investigation against a campaign treasurer accused of fraud grows.

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    Fallout from Alleged Fraud by Campaign Treasurer Grows

    More and more Democrats are learning how much of their money may be missing, as the investigation against a campaign treasurer accused of fraud grows. (Published Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2011)

    Politicians say she was the gold standard of treasurers, and they say that Kinde Durkee knew everything about campaign contributions and the law. That is why they trusted her.

    Now Durkee and Associates is closed. Durkee herself arrested by the FBI and charged with mail fraud. Prosecutors are accusing her of pilfering the campaign accounts of as many as 400 Democratic candidates and committees.

    The alleged victims read like a who's who of California blue politics. Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez may be out $600,000. Sen. Dianne Feinstein says her campaign was wiped out. 

    Irvine mayor Sukhee Kang says his bank account shrunk from $20,000 to $700. Kang opened a second account in July to fund his run for congress, but it is missing about $25,000, too. Money, he says, is needed for more than banners and buttons.

    "It's very critical to be getting the message out to the voters," said Kang. "In doing so, every penny really does matter."

    Democratic Party Chair Frank Barbero says the FBI has frozen bank accounts connected to Orange County's Democratic Party.

    "There's so many loose ends. Do we ever get the money back?" said Barbero. "How is this money reported? Is this really a campaign contribution if it's gone?"

    Related: PropZero Analysis of Durkee Case

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