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GOP Rep. Chris Collins Responds to ‘Meritless’ Charges in Presser, Says He’s Still Running For Reelection

New York Rep. Chris Collins (R) is speaking out after being charged in federal court with insider trading.

The sitting Congressman turned himself into federal authorities in New York Wednesday morning on 13 counts of securities fraud, wire fraud and false statements. His son and another man were also charged in the scheme.

Shortly after the indictments were announced, Collins’ lawyers issued this statement that was posted on the Congressman’s webpage:

“We will answer the charges filed against Congressman Collins in Court and will mount a vigorous defense to clear his good name.  It is notable that even the government does not allege that Congressman Collins traded a single share of Innate Therapeutics stock.   We are confident he will be completely vindicated and exonerated.”

Collins also tweeted out a statement of his own making it clear that despite the charges, he plans to run for re-election.

Collins was also slated to speak to reporters Wednesday night to address the “issue” personally. Yet, only after a lengthy delay of more than an hour did he finally appear in front of reporters.

Collins started by introducing his wife and talking about his track record as a businessman and public official.

Then after detailing his relationship with Innate, he said his “real concern” was those suffering with a form of multiple sclerosis that would have been helped if the drug had been successful

“I am proud of my affiliation with Innate [Therapeutics],” Collins said, painting himself as an investor who wanted to be part of something that would “revolutionize treatment options” for secondary progressive multiple sclerosis.

He also stressed that he believes he did nothing wrong.

“I believe I acted properly and within the law,” he said, referring to his relationship with Innate and noting he lost millions in investments in the failed venture.

Finally, after calling the charges “meritless” and promising a vigorous defense in court, Collins said he would be “fully vindicated” in court and once again stressed he “will remain on the ballot running for reelection this November.”

Watch above, via CNN

[image via screengrab]

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