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Two-time presidential nominee John Edwards was indicted on six felony counts of violating campaign finance law Friday.
A federal grand jury indicted Edwards on spending more than $925,000 of campaign finds to hide his mistress and their baby during his 2008 campaign.
The case USA vs. Johnny Reid Edwards contains six counts, including conspiracy, four counts of illegal campaign contributions and one count of false statements.
The indictment said the payments were a scheme to protect Edwards’ White House ambitions. “A centerpiece of Edwards’ candidacy was his public image as a devoted family man,” the indictment said.
“Edwards knew that public revelation of the affair and the pregnancy would destroy his candidacy by, among other things, undermining Edwards’ presentation of himself as a family man and by forcing his campaign to divert personnel and resources away from other campaign activities to respond to criticism and media scrutiny regarding the affair and pregnancy,” the indictment added.
The indictment and an arrest warrant were filed in Greensboro, N.C., which is in the district where his campaign was headquartered.
An Edwards spokeswoman said she wasn’t aware of the filing and declined immediate comment.
Edwards was a Hollywood favorite. In 2003, Ashton Kutcher campaigned with him in Iowa. Victoria and Dennis Hopper threw him a fundraiser at their Hollywood home, which was also attended by Aaron Sorkin.
– The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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Tracee Ellis Ross