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Feds to File Criminal Charges Against Rep. Grimm

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TWC News: Feds to File Criminal Charges Against Rep. Grimm
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Congressman Michael Grimm, who represents parts of Staten Island and Brooklyn, is expected to be indicted on criminal charges, his lawyer confirmed to NY1 on Friday.

Federal authorities have been investigating Grimm's campaign finances for two years, but it's still not clear what the charges are or when they will be formally filed.

Grimm allegedly received help from an Israeli citizen in his fundraising, and received more than $500,000 from one rabbi and his followers.

In January, Grimm's ex-girlfriend, Diana Durand, was arrested in Houston, Texas, then arraigned in federal court in Brooklyn for allegedly funneling illegal contributions to Grimm.

He also made national headlines in January when he physically threatened NY1's Washington bureau reporter Michael Scotto after he asked about the campaign finance issues.

Grimm was first elected to Congress in 2010.

The Republican's campaign was reportedly more than $450,000 in debt this March.

Grimm's attorney, William McGinley, released a statement saying the Congressman will continue to serve, adding, "After more than two years of investigation plagued by malicious leaks, violations of grand jury secrecy, and strong-arm tactics, the U.S. Attorney’s Office has disclosed its intent to file criminal charges against Congressman Grimm. We are disappointed by the government's decision, but hardly surprised. From the beginning, the government has pursued a politically driven vendetta against Congressman Grimm and not an independent search for the truth. Congressman Grimm asserts his innocence of any wrongdoing. When the dust settles, he will be vindicated."

Meantime, voters in Grimm's district had mixed reactions to the news.

"Shouldn't be facing, he's a nice guy. I've known him like four or five years so far. He's a nice guy. That's it," said one Grimm constituent.

"I think he's a bully in general and maybe he deserves what he gets but legally I don't know what he's up against, but I'm not fond of the guy," said another constituent.

"It doesn't surprise me, I mean, he is a politician from New York," noted a third constituent.

Former City Councilman Domenic Recchia, who's challenging Grimm in this year's election, says it's important to let federal authorities do their job.

He says the allegations will not change the focus of his campaign.

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