George Santos' former aide launches new serious allegations
Washington DC - A former aide to George Santos said he got his job after sending a series of payments to one of the congressman's top lieutenants.
Santos' ex-staffer Derek Myers told the House Ethics Committee in a Wednesday hearing that he sent at least seven $150 payments to Santos’ director of operations, Vish Burra – and he had the receipts and text messages to prove it.
The 31-year-old said he sent the money because he believed Burra wasn't getting paid at the time and couldn't afford food, and also because he thought sending the cash might help him get a job.
"Burra was a powerful person," Myers told the Associated Press. "I wanted him to advocate on my behalf."
The former aide noted that Burra did not ask him for money, but did once send a message saying "send more pizza." Myers believed that to be a reference to the pizza emoji he had used in previous Venmo payments.
On January 29, days after getting the job in Santos' office, Myers texted Burra asking, "Did you get payroll yet."
"No. You didn’t have to do that man," Burra responded. "I’m gonna pay you back for sure."
George Santos in hot water over shady dealings
Myers was dismissed from Santos' staff in February. He sent a letter to the House Ethics Committee saying he was fired for rejecting Santos' sexual advances, allegations the New York Republican has denied.
The former staffer told House investigators he had secretly recorded at least one conversation with Santos and shared it with a journalist. He also admitted he had gone to the FBI while working for Santos to possibly serve as a confidential informant.
Myers' latest revelations have raised even more concerns over Santos' improper behavior and potential ethics violations.
Since winning his first term in Congress in November, the disgraced lawmaker has come under fire for lying about his career and personal history and for his shady campaign finances.
Earlier this month, some Republicans blocked an attempt to expel Santos from Congress, instead referring the matter to the House Ethics Committee.
The controversial congressman is currently facing federal charges of fraud and money laundering.
Cover photo: REUTERS