The investigation focused only on Jestine Iannotti’s official campaign, and how Eric Foglesong and Ben Paris helped.
The criminal indictments announced Tuesday involving the “ghost candidate” case of Seminole County revolve around a few allegedly fraudulent campaign finance transactions limited strictly to the official 2020 Senate District 9 campaign of independent candidate Jestine Iannotti.
A Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) investigative summary shows the investigation that led to indictments against Iannotti, political consultant Eric Foglesong, and Seminole County Republican Party Chair Ben Paris had nothing to do with any allegations involving big sums of dark money that many had believed were moving around in SD 9 leading up to the 2020 General Election.
The FDLE investigative summary reveals no leads into any broader conspiracy. It merely focuses on how Iannotti ran her very modest independent campaign account, with assistance from Foglesong and Paris.
Little was spelled out in the investigative summary involving the bigger picture of political operatives allegedly setting up the campaign of a little-known independent candidate in a race between high-profile Republican Jason Brodeur and high-profile Democrat Patricia Sigman for an open seat in the highly-contested SD 9 in Seminole and Volusia counties.
There were no discussions of shadowy, dark-money political action committees getting involved, such as one behind mailers distributed throughout SD 9 during the fall of 2020, urging voters to consider Iannotti as an alternative to Sigman. Nor does it pursue questions about who paid for that outside campaign.