Hagens Berman: Class-Action Lawsuit Accuses Aaron Schock of Defrauding Thousands of Campaign Contributors

Lawsuit seeks refunds for Schock’s campaign contributors for alleged misleading statements

CHICAGO--()--A campaign contributor today filed a class-action lawsuit against former U.S. Congressman Aaron Schock (R-Ill.) seeking refunds for thousands of Schock’s campaign contributors who allege that Schock ran a campaign full of corruption and lies about his integrity intended to defraud contributors, according to attorneys at Hagens Berman. Schock allegedly overstated reimbursements, did not report large gifts and contributions and frivolously incurred expenses such as for a Downton Abbey-inspired office renovation – all while giving an impression that he was a “breath of fresh air in Illinois politics.”

The complaint alleges on behalf of a class of Schock’s campaign contributors that Schock contacted and solicited campaign contributors across the country for millions of dollars in campaign contributions and distributed false and/or misleading marketing materials for personal enrichment, statements that led contributors to believe that he had integrity and would make good on promises.

The lawsuit filed on April 15, 2015 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois alleges Schock committed fraud and racketeering under the Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act in an organized scheme to defraud campaign contributors. The suit also accuses Schock of common law fraud, promissory estoppel and unjust enrichment.

“Schock’s campaign contributors believed he was someone with integrity. It’s clear that the mirage of an upstanding candidate he sold to contributors is nothing like the real Schock whose campaign was built on a false image,” said Steve Berman, managing partner of Hagens Berman. “When Schock resigned from office, he told the public that he would ‘work tirelessly’ to repay those whom he let down – we believe this lawsuit gives him the golden opportunity to do just that, and we look forward to seeing every penny returned to campaign contributors who believed the false statements Schock was spoon-feeding his supporters.”

Individuals who contributed to Schock’s campaign from Jan. 1, 2010 to Mar. 31, 2015 may contact Hagens Berman by emailing schock@hbsslaw.com or by calling 206-623-7292. Find out more about the class-action lawsuit against Schock.

“Effective with his March 31, 2015 resignation as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Defendant Aaron Schock joined a long line of disgraced former Illinois politicians,” the complaint states. “Plaintiff, like all Schock contributors, gave money to the rising young Republican Congressman because he believed Mr. Schock was ethical, a breath of fresh air in Illinois politics, and had a bright future in Congress. However, the opposite was true, and while Schock may have been a new, young face in Congress, he willingly followed well-tread paths of political sleaze for personal gain.”

Berman added, “Our firm combats corruption in the largest corporations in the country – from Toyota and GM to Big Tobacco. We’re holding Schock and his campaign to the same standard because we believe that Schock ran his campaign based on a false image, and that contributors deserve retribution after putting their faith in a seemingly upstanding candidate – one that clearly did not exist.”

The lawsuit’s named plaintiff, Howard Foster contributed $500 to Schock, solicited by Schock through Schock’s campaign committees. Like thousands of other contributors, Foster contributed money to Schock’s campaign for the specific purpose of electing a congressional representative with integrity who would deliver on his promises, the suit states. Foster would not have contributed to Schock’s campaign had he known of Schock’s then ongoing illegal and/or unethical activities. According to the complaint, mailings that Foster received described Schock as honest, different from other Illinois politicians who had been indicted in recent scandals and having the potential to change the image of the Republican Party to make it more appealing to millennials.

“Every one of these mailings was sent pursuant to Schock’s scheme to defraud donors,” the complaint states. “He was in fact a corrupt politician deeply engaged in illegal and/or unethical transactions to enrich himself.”

Individuals who contributed to Schock’s campaign from Jan. 1, 2010 to Mar. 31, 2015 may contact Hagens Berman by emailing schock@hbsslaw.com or by calling 206-623-7292. Find out more about the class-action lawsuit against Schock.

About Hagens Berman

Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP is a consumer-rights class-action law firm with offices in nine cities. The firm has been named to the National Law Journal’s Plaintiffs’ Hot List eight times. More about the law firm and its successes can be found at www.hbsslaw.com. Follow the firm for updates and news at @ClassActionLaw.

Contacts

Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP
Ashley Klann, 206-268-9363
ashleyk@hbsslaw.com

Release Summary

A campaign contributor today filed a class-action lawsuit against former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock (R-Ill.) seeking refunds for thousands of campaign contributors according to attorneys at Hagens Berman.

Contacts

Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP
Ashley Klann, 206-268-9363
ashleyk@hbsslaw.com