The political stakes in the Stanford Financial scandal are getting higher.
The court-appointed receiver who is tracking down the billions of dollars missing in the alleged Ponzi scheme — Dallas attorney Ralph Janvey — has filed suit against the major parties' congressional campaign committee seeking the return of $1.6 million in contributions they received from company founder Allen Stanford and his top lieutenants.
The move comes less than two weeks after Janvey demanded the committees return the funds, but received no response.
The suit, filed in federal court in Dallas, names the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the National Republican Congressional Committee, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the Republican National Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee.
The suit says the committees "have no legitimate right" to keep the contributions, which Janvey says belong to Stanford's investors.
The suit says the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee received the largest amount of tainted contributions, $950,000. The National Republican Congressional Committee follows with $238,500; the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee received $200,000, the Republican National Committee got $128,500 and the National Republican Senatorial Committee took in $83,345. None of the committees was immediately available for comment.
Janvey has thus far stopped short of suing individual members of Congress, from whom he is seeking another $200,000 in contributions. Several of the congressmen, including Texas Republican Pete Sessions and New York Democrat Charlie Rangel have said they donated their Stanford-linked contributions to charity.
In addition to Janvey's lawsuit, the Miami Herald reported in December that federal prosecutors are investigating whether Stanford's lavish campaign contributions were an improper attempt to buy influence.