Jay Odom, 56, of Destin, pleaded guilty today before Senior U.S. District Judge Lacey A. Collier to one count of causing a presidential campaign committee to make a false statement to the Federal Election Commission (FEC). The guilty plea was announced this afternoon by Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department's Criminal Division and Robert O. Davis, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Florida.
According to court documents, in approximately December 2007, Odom directly and indirectly solicited employees of his business entities and their family members to each make the maximum allowable contributions to the authorized campaign committee of a presidential candidate. The employees were encouraged to make these donations with the understanding that Odom would advance funds to or reimburse these individuals for their contributions. Odom admitted to both knowing that this activity was illegal and intending to conceal the true source and amount of the campaign contributions.
In 2007, Odom directly or indirectly used personal funds to reimburse individual contributions to the authorized campaign committee of the presidential candidate for a total of $23,000. As a result of this scheme, Odom intentionally caused the presidential candidate's authorized campaign committee to file a report with the FEC that falsely stated that 10 individual donors had made federal campaign contributions when in fact each contribution was made by Odom.
At sentencing, scheduled for 10:30AM on April 23, 2013, Odom faces a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison.
This case was investigated by the FBI. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Randall J. Hensel and Trial Attorney Brian K. Kidd of the Criminal Division's Public Integrity Section.