Taff indicted for misuse of campaign contributions

Adam Taff, a two-time Republican candidate for Congress, has been indicted in federal court on charges of converting political campaign contributions for personal use and wire fraud.

U.S. Atty. Eric Melgren said that in December 2003 – the year between his two failed campaigns – Taff agreed to buy a Lake Quivira home from John Myers, Leawood, founder and chairman of Myers National Mortgage Company. While applying for a mortgage, Taff claimed among his assets two bank accounts, totaling $311,000, that actually belonged to his campaign for the 3rd District congressional seat.

According to Melgren, what followed was a complicated financial transaction on Feb. 10, 2004, in which Taff drew on $175,000 in campaign funds for a $300,000 bank check made out to Myers.

The check was never intended for Myers, Melgren said. Instead, Taff and Myers met with a closing agent from an Overland Park title company. The agent altered the check to make it appear the money was payable to the title company. The agent also prepared a closing statement, sent to a mortgage company, stating Taff had paid $300,000 to the title company for payment to Myers.

After sending the false statement to the mortgage company, Melgren said, Taff returned the money to his campaign accounts at Metcalf Bank.

Taff, a moderate Republican, was his party’s candidate to challenge U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore, D-Kan., in the 2002 election to represent the district covering part of Douglas County, along with Wyandotte and Johnson counties. Taff lost in the 2004 primary to Kris Kobach.

Myers was charged with one count of wire fraud in the case, Melgren said.

The wire fraud charge carries a a maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison and a fine up to $1 million. Taff also faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine on the charge of converting campaign funds.