Co-defendant in Tennessee senator’s case plans guilty plea

By JONATHAN MATTISE
Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A Nashville social club’s owner has reached a deal to plead guilty to a campaign finance scheme alleged against him and a Tennessee senator, who has deemed the charges a “political witch hunt.”

Attorneys for Joshua Smith last week notified the federal judge of the plea-deal decision in the case centering on state Sen. Brian Kelsey.

Smith’s attorney, Phillip Georges, on Wednesday signaled his client’s willingness to testify.

The Republican lawmaker is scheduled for a January trial after pleading not guilty.

The five-count indictment from October 2021 alleges that Smith, owner of The Standard club, and Kelsey violated campaign finance laws by illegally concealing the transfer of $91,000 during the lawmaker’s 2016 failed congressional campaign.

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Categories: Government & Politics, Regional News