Longtime Democratic Campaign Treasurer Charged with Fraud

Aide who has worked for Feinstein, Sanchez, suspected of embezzlement

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The treasurer for hundreds of Democratic campaign committees in California, including those of Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Rep. Loretta Sanchez, was arrested Friday and charged with mail fraud related to her work in a legislative race, local news outlets said.

Kinde Durkee was arrested at the offices of her firm, Durkee & Associates, the Los Angeles Times and Orange County Register reported, and will appear in court on Tuesday.

The indictment "focuses on transactions involving the account of a single member of the Assembly, but our investigation is continuing," a spokeswoman for prosecutors told the Times. The state didn't identify the campaign allegedly victimized in the fraud, but the Times says state Sen. Lou Correa of Santa Ana was told by the FBI Friday night that his campaign fund "might have been the victim of embezzlement of a 'substantial amount' of funds, possibly in the hundreds of thousands of dollars."

Correa said the phone call Friday was his first indication that there were any potential issues with Durkee, whose services he has used for more than 15 years. “At first I thought it was some kind of sick joke,” he said.

Durkee has worked for Democratic campaigns in the state since 1972, Roll Call reported.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.