Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) lied to a Seattle judge about working for Goldman Sachs during a 2017 court appearance, according to audio of the proceeding that was obtained and published Friday by Politico.
Introducing himself as George Anthony Devolder Santos, he spoke at a bail hearing in support of a man accused of an ATM fraud scheme, Gustavo Ribeiro Trelha, stating that his parents and Trelha’s parents knew each other in Brazil.
Santos said Trelha’s parents had been sending money to ensure their son had a place to stay if he were released on bail. Santos was helping by finding an “extended-stay apartment through Airbnb” or other such accommodation, he said.
Trelha’s public defender, Virginia Branham, introduced Santos to King County Superior Court Judge Sean O’Donnell, who wanted to hear from him directly.
“So what do you do for work?” the judge asked.
“I’m an aspiring politician, and I work for Goldman Sachs,” Santos said.
“You work for Goldman Sachs in New York?”
Santos did not appear to be under oath at the time.
He acknowledged in December that he had “embellished” his resume after a New York Times investigation turned up no record of employment at either Goldman Sachs or Citigroup, another financial giant he claimed to work for.
A tidal wave of other lies subsequently came to light. Santos, it turned out, had told wild tales over the years about how his mother died, his family’s ancestry and other biographical details.
The freshman Republican has refused bipartisan calls for his resignation, although he gave up his House committee assignments amid the controversy.
Politico explained Santos’ connection to Trelha after speaking with him through a translator: The two had been roommates in Florida, having met on a Facebook group for Brazilians living in Orlando. Politico said it viewed a copy of the lease.
Trelha was accused of using ATM-skimming equipment in downtown Seattle.
He had a fake Brazilian ID card and 10 suspected fraudulent cards in his hotel room, according to arrest documents. An empty Fed-Ex package police found in his rental car was sent from the Winter Park apartment he shared with Santos. Trelha declined to say who sent the package from the apartment.
Trelha was unable to post bail and ultimately deported back to Brazil.