Politics & Government

Michael O'Donnell scheduled to answer fraud, money laundering charges Wednesday

Michael O'Donnell campaigns for a seat on the Sedgwick County Commission.
Michael O'Donnell campaigns for a seat on the Sedgwick County Commission. File photo

Sedgwick County Commissioner Michael O'Donnell is scheduled to appear in federal court Wednesday to answer criminal charges of bank fraud, wire fraud and money laundering.

It will be O'Donnell's first court appearance since he was indicted by a federal grand jury on April 26, according to court records and the court clerk's office.

O'Donnell has been ordered to appear at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday to enter a plea during the regularly scheduled magistrate's docket at the federal courthouse, 401 N. Market St., Wichita.

He will appear before Magistrate Judge Gwynne E. Birzer, the court records show.

The indictment against O'Donnell was unsealed on Friday. He faces two counts of money laundering and five counts each of bank and wire fraud.

The indictment alleges that O'Donnell unlawfully converted campaign funds for his personal use and/or payments to friends. It also alleges that O'Donnell filed false reports to the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission in an attempt to cover up illegal spending.

All the allegations relate to O'Donnell's campaign account from when he served as a Kansas senator, 2013-2017.

O'Donnell did not return a phone call Monday seeking comment.

Sedgwick County Commissioner Richard Ranzau, who had been openly critical of fellow commissioner Michael O'Donnell during public meetings, reacts to the news that O'Donnell has been indicted in federal court on bank and wire fraud charges.

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