Attorney: Accidental errors led to ethics charges - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

Attorney: Accidental errors led to ethics charges

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The Senate Ethics Committee of South Carolina issued a complaint to Sen. Robert Ford for ethics violations. The Senate Ethics Committee of South Carolina issued a complaint to Sen. Robert Ford for ethics violations.
COLUMBIA, S.C. -

The attorney for Sen. Robert Ford says the ethics charges against the 64-year-old Charleston Democrat stem from bookkeeping errors.
    
Attorney William Runyon said Thursday it's difficult for a "citizen legislator" such as Ford to keep up with the unwieldy process of campaign paperwork.
    
His comments come a day after the Senate Ethics Committee found probable cause to support allegations that Ford violated seven areas of state ethics laws over four years. Allegations in the complaint include that he used campaign donations for personal expenses, misrepresented expenses as campaign-related and reported incorrect amounts for what he spent.
    
The complaint provides no specifics. Documents supporting the allegations aren't public. Runyon said he hasn't seen them yet either.
    
Ford has until May 2 to respond. Possible results include dismissal and fines.

The Senate Ethics Committee of South Carolina issued a complaint to Sen. Robert Ford for ethics violations.

According to the complaint Senator Ford is accused of:

1.  Utilizing campaign funds to defray personal expenses that were unrelated to your campaign or office.

2.  Misrepresented your Campaign Disclosure Reports the amounts of various expenditures because they were inconsistent with the actual expenditures.

3.  Misrepresented your Campaign Disclosure reports to make certain expenditures appear as if they were related to your campaign when they were actually personal in nature.

4.  Made numerous cash withdrawals in excess of $100, each of which is a separate violation.

5.  Failed to report numerous contributions from individuals and entities on your Campaign Disclosure Reports

6.  Failed to report numerous expenditures from your campaign banking account on your Campaign Disclosure Report.

7.  Failed to report on your Campaign Disclosure Reports various campaign loans and campaign loan repayments.

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