Here are some highlights from the bombshell indictment handed up against embattled state Representative David M. Nangle, a Lowell Democrat arrested for allegedly raiding his campaign fund to fuel a gambling habit and pay personal expenses.
We’ve also culled relevant information from campaign finance reports and other sources.
It should be noted that Nangle, a respected lawmaker for roughly two decades, has pleaded not guilty to 28 felony counts in US District Court in Boston. His lawyer has described him as “a good man who has proudly served his district as a state representative,” while noting that the charges “are merely allegations. We will fight these charges in court.”
No opponents, but a campaign war-chest — The indictment says that even though Nangle hasn’t had election opponents since 2013, he nevertheless “raised hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign funds,” which “further allowed him to use campaign funds to supplement his personal finances instead of using the funds for permissible campaign purposes.”
As of Feb. 5, Nangle had $23,586.42 in his campaign fund, according to state Office of Campaign and Political Finance records.
Reported fund expenditures in January included a $27.52 payment toward a Boston Globe subscription, an $88.20 tab at LongHorn Steakhouse for a meeting with a constituent to help with “housing and insurance issues,” and a $351.20 payment to the Dedham-based Chick Montana Group for consulting, records show.
Chick Montana’s mission “is to establish and manage accurate and thorough campaign finance reporting practices so our clients can maintain the highest degree of fiscal responsibility and transparency,” its website says.
In deep to restaurant owners — Among Nangle’s creditors were three restaurant owners in Dracut, Salisbury, and Lowell, according to the indictment, which doesn’t name the owners or their eateries.
Nangle had borrowed about $100,000 from the Dracut restauranteur since 2011 and still owed roughly $87,000 as of late 2018, the indictment says. He’d borrowed “thousands of dollars” from the Salisbury owner since 2015 and repaid a debt of approximately $10,000 as of September 2018, and the Lowell owner was good for over $1,000 between 2014 and 2015, which Nangle repaid by 2015, according to the indictment.
A Billerica boost — The owner of a Billerica facilities maintenance company paid Nangle $10,000 in December 2014 and $17,000 in February 2015 for purported consulting services that the 59-year-old lawmaker never performed, the indictment says. Neither the owner nor the company were named in court papers.
Nangle, the indictment said, used the funds to purchase a new home in Lowell, and the Billerica company was kind enough to paint several rooms in the residence free of charge.
City assessing records on Wednesday listed Nangle as the owner of the modest ranch on Trull Street. The home and lot are valued at a combined $344,800. The house has aluminum siding and five rooms, including two bedrooms and a bath, records show.
Alleged golf club ruse — The indictment says Nangle used some campaign funds to pay dues at a Lowell golf club and masked the true purpose of the payments when he submitted his reports to the state. According to court papers, Nangle listed payments of $1,520 in November 2014 and $1,675 in November 2015 as “catering” expenses for his political committee, when in fact those moneys paid for golf club member dues, locker fees, cart charges and assessments.
A $654 payment for member dues in July 2016 was listed as “Meeting w/campaign volunteers re: election," an $865 payout in April 2017 for club member dues and other fees was listed as “Fundraiser Catering," an $836 member due payment in November 2018 was reported as “Campaign Volunteers Appreciation,” and a $400 club member account payment in April 2019 was listed as “Hall Rental Setup Charge and Linens for Friendraiser," the indictment says.
An assist from an old Beacon Hill pal — Among the debts Nangle failed to disclose on his annual Statement of Financial Interest filings for lawmakers was debt of at least $4,500 to a former state representative, whom Nangle had hit up for loans totaling at least $7,000 from 2011 to 2014, according to the indictment.
The lawmaker isn’t named in the indictment, which notes that Nangle “contributed hundreds of dollars of campaign donations” to the lending legislator “using Nangle Committee funds.”
Debt diversion — The indictment says Nangle lied on bank loan applications by omitting various debts hanging over his head. During one loan application in December 2017, the filing says, Nangle disclosed mortgage and credit card debts as well as two medical debts but failed to mention what he owed the Dracut restaurant owner and the IRS. He also omitted his “regular use of campaign funds for personal use as ‘Other’ income,” the indictment says.
Fuzzy math on mileage — The indictment says Nangle submitted fraudulent out-of-pocket mileage expenses on his income tax returns.
The filing says Nangle “claimed to have driven over 300,000 miles during the period from 2014 to 2018, using his sole, primary vehicle, a 2008 Chevy sedan. In 2014, for example, NANGLE claimed to have driven 47,000 miles for Billerica Company ‘consulting’ work and ‘other’ purposes. Even assuming NANGLE had begun his ‘consulting’ on the effective date of the agreement (August 17, 2014) NANGLE would have had to have driven approximately 345 miles per day, 7 days per week until December 31, 2014.”
The feds elaborated in a footnote.
“From December 3, 2013 through December 20, 2017, State vehicle inspection records for defendant NANGLE’S 2008 sedan showed a total of approximately 132,500 miles driven,” the indictment says. “For corresponding periods on his tax returns (tax years 2014 to 2017) NANGLE fraudulently claimed to have driven approximately 290,040 miles.”
Late-night jackpot, allegedly followed by sneaky dealings — The indictment references one night in 2018 when Nangle hit Triple 7′s at the slots but allegedly tried to hide his windfall from the taxman.
From the filing: “In the late evening hours of May 2, 2018 to the early morning hours of May 3, 2018, NANGLE won a $1,221 jackpot on a slot machine at CT [Connecticut] Casino 2. ... Instead of truthfully reporting such winnings, defendant NANGLE paid another individual to collect NANGLE’s winnings so that NANGLE could evade reporting this casino income to the IRS on Form W-2G. This conduct was captured on CT Casino 2 video surveillance."
Travis Andersen can be reached at email@example.com.