Prince George’s County Delegate Facing Federal Wire Fraud Charge

October 8, 2019
Maryland State Delegate Tawanna P. Gaines, age 67, of Berwyn Heights

Maryland State Delegate Tawanna P. Gaines, age 67, of Berwyn Heights

A federal criminal information was filed today charging Maryland State Delegate Tawanna P. Gaines, age 67, of Berwyn Heights, Maryland, with a federal wire fraud charge. An initial appearance and arraignment is expected to be scheduled later this week in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt.

The indictment was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur and Special Agent in Charge Jennifer C. Boone of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office.

According to the criminal information, Gaines was a Maryland State Delegate from December 2001 through the present, representing District 22, which covered portions of Prince George’s County. Over her years in the House of Delegates, Gaines held many committee assignments, including vice-chair of the Appropriations Committee and Assistant Majority Leader. The “Friends of Tawanna P. Gaines” (FTPG) candidate committee was the name of the finance entity for the Gaines campaign for Maryland State Delegate from June 2002 to the present. FTPG was a regulated state election campaign committee with a designated bank account. Separately, Gaines held exclusive control over a PayPal account used to accept electronic donations to FTPG which was not disclosed in State campaign finance filings.

The criminal information alleges that from at least January 2015 through April 2018, Gaines defrauded the campaign and its contributors of more than $22,000. Specifically, the information alleges that Gaines solicited campaign contributions representing that the funds would be used to facilitate her reelection and maintain her leadership positions within the Maryland General Assembly. Gaines allegedly accepted donations from campaign contributors into the FTPG PayPal account, then without authorization and in violation of Maryland campaign finance laws, utilized campaign funds from the FTPG account for her personal use. According to the criminal information, Gaines received campaign contributions and converted them to her own use without causing the contributions to be identified on reports made to the Maryland State Board of Elections.

If convicted, Gaines faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison for wire fraud.

A criminal information is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by criminal information is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.

United States Attorney Robert K. Hur commended the FBI for its work in the investigation. Mr. Hur thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas P. Windom, who is prosecuting the case.

17 Responses to Prince George’s County Delegate Facing Federal Wire Fraud Charge

  1. Queen of the Iron Throne on October 8, 2019 at 3:36 pm

    Imagine that, a crroked politician from PG County. Who would have expected that.

  2. Wiggy on October 8, 2019 at 4:21 pm

    They’re all crooks.

  3. Pam442 on October 8, 2019 at 4:39 pm

    Was she a Democrat?

    • Anonymous on October 9, 2019 at 1:10 pm

      Still is!

    • Jimmy V. on October 9, 2019 at 3:17 pm

      Of course.

  4. tiredofthesepeople on October 8, 2019 at 4:58 pm

    Must be a Democrat. Send her away for the maximum allowed time!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Anonymous on October 9, 2019 at 1:11 pm

      Never see that.

      Probation.

    • Anonymous on October 11, 2019 at 7:18 am

      SHE A REPUBLICAN LIKE ALL YALL IDIOTS.

  5. White Knight on October 8, 2019 at 5:20 pm

    Oh boy not in PG County??? Step up all PG defenders!

  6. Double Standard on October 8, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    Guess she’s a Democrat. If she was GOP it would of been mentioned in the Headline..

  7. Joe on October 8, 2019 at 7:48 pm

    Nom Nom Nom on Jail food baby

  8. Anonymous on October 8, 2019 at 7:57 pm

    it sets a bad example for elected officials to resign from office before they’ve plead guilty or been found guilty. It gives the criminal justice system way more credibility than it ought to have & sets the example that you’re guilty before you’re proven guilty. Lets not convict on a mugshot, lets not convict because someone s been arrested. We still have jury duty in this county & jurors are supposed to not convict until they vote among themselves to convict. If someone s going to convict based upon an arrest, they should decline jury duty. Part of setting the right example & being a role model is to let the charges play out. If your attorney convinces you to take a plea, then don’t resign until after that.

    • Ben Matlock on October 9, 2019 at 5:40 am

      Pretty sure no one put a gun to her head and told her to resign.

  9. Jimmy V. on October 9, 2019 at 3:18 pm

    Typical PG Politician.

  10. Ms BLK LADY 2019 on October 9, 2019 at 3:30 pm

    WOW, another Black person in a elected position. Please people there will always be a WITCH HUNT on us. We know facts about the white counterparts of guilty status investigate ALL of the republicans global warning and they All would be arrested for fraud. DOUBLE STANDARDS AS USUAL. They are all in cohoots with the coverups

    • Anonymous on October 9, 2019 at 6:55 pm

      did you want to have a discussion about race & electability? We’ve needed to have a discussion about that for a long time

  11. Anonymous on October 9, 2019 at 6:53 pm

    The General Assembly (Senators & Delegates) are tasked with making laws. We crack open a bible far more than we crack open a law book, so, we are left to decide what is legal & illegal by using laws as a basis for doing so. Emergency vehicles run red lights to get their passengers to the hospital/ on their way to accidents, so, is it legal to run a red light while you’re on the way to the hospital? Raw vegetables, raw eggs are legal, so is raw milk? Its ok to have plants at your house, so, is it ok to have cannabis? Oh oh oh, what is legal & illegal to do since abortion is allowed? Go ahead and use abortion being allowed as a basis to decide what is illegal. Why not? This is probably not legal to do. Why not? Abortion is legal. Yea, but abortion is …………. abortion is what?

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