Ex-Congressman Steve Stockman facing lengthy prison time in Houston federal courtroom

November 7, 2018 GMT

On the heels of a midterm election that could reshape the political landscape in Washington, a former beltway firebrand is set to be sentenced in Houston federal court Wednesday for his role in a wide-ranging scheme that included a spy operation aimed a fellow Republican challenger and $1.25 million in campaign funds pilfered from conservative megadonors.

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Steve Stockman, 61, of Clear Lake, a Tea Party stalwart who represented East Texas during two non-consecutive terms in the U.S. Congress, has been in custody since a jury convicted him 23 felony counts stemming from unlawful use of charitable donations in April.

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At sentencing Wednesday before Chief U.S. Judge Lee H. Rosenthal, Stockman faces the potential of more than 20 years on each of seven mail and wire fraud charges, as well as 10 years on each of 11 money laundering counts, five years apiece on two counts of making false statements, plus five years for making coordinated campaign contributions and up to three years for filing a false tax return.

Two former aides Thomas Dodd, 38, and Jason Posey, 46, pleaded guilty to aiding in the scheme and provided key testimony for the prosecution. Both men are set for sentencing Dec. 12.

Gabrielle Banks covers federal court for the Houston Chronicle. Follow her on Twitter and send her tips at gabrielle.banks@chron.com