In the Morning Jolt, Jim nicely outlines the increasingly bizarre story of a family of Pakistani information technologists who became House staffers under the auspices of Representative Debbie Wasserman Shultz (DWS) of Florida, the former head of the Democratic National Committee and a Clinton partisan. Over the years, family members were paid millions of dollars, and there are allegations of fraud, property theft, and potential swiping of information to which they had access on the House IT network.
The entire story merits attention and follow-up, working backwards from yesterday’s arrest of Imran Awan, DWS’s top IT staffer, whom she has gone to great lengths to protect despite the swirling investigation. Awan was bagged trying to flee to Lahore, Pakistan. According to the complaint filed in federal court in support of his arrest, Awan wired $283,000 in January from the Congressional Federal Credit Union to Faisalabad, Pakistan. He has been charged with bank fraud in a scheme involving mortgages on various properties owned by the Awan family.
The FBI has also reportedly searched his home, seizing computer hard drives that had been smashed to pieces. For now, I want to focus on a narrow part of the story. In early March, as Jim details, Imran’s wife, Hina Alvi, suddenly left the country for Lahore, by way of Doha, Qatar. Notwithstanding the return flight she booked for a date in September 2017, the FBI believes that she actually has no intention to return to the U.S. She had abruptly pulled the couple’s three daughters out of school without alerting the school’s staff, and brought them with her — along with lots of luggage and household goods — to Pakistan.
Hina had also been on the House payroll.
This whole story stinks.