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Press Release

Southern California Man Pleads Guilty to Making Illegal Contributions to His Son’s Congressional Campaigns

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

A southern California man pleaded guilty today to making excessive campaign contributions and making campaign contributions in the name of another.

Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and Acting U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert of the Eastern District of California made the announcement.

Babulal Bera, 83, of La Palma, California, pleaded guilty in Sacramento before U.S. District Judge Troy L. Nunley in the Eastern District of California.  He is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Nunley on Aug. 4.

In connection with his pleas, Bera admitted that, in 2010 and 2012, he made the maximum allowable individual contributions to his son’s congressional campaigns in California’s District 3 (2010) and District 7 (2012).  He further admitted that he solicited friends, family members and acquaintances to make contributions, which he then reimbursed with his own funds to make campaign contributions in excess of the contribution limits established by federal law.  The government has identified over 130 improper campaign contributions involving approximately 90 contributors in the two elections.  To date, the government has identified over $220,000 in reimbursed contributions relating to the 2010 campaign and over $40,000 in reimbursed contributions relating to the 2012 campaign.

This case was investigated by the FBI.  Trial Attorney Richard Evans of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys John Vincent and Philip Ferrari are prosecuting the case.


Updated November 6, 2019

Public Corruption
Press Release Number: 16-550