North Carolina Republican Party chairman charged in bribery case

FILE PHOTO: Chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party and former congressman Robin Hayes is seen in Hillsborough, North Carolina, U.S. October 17, 2016. REUTERS/Chris Keane

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Justice Department said on Tuesday that it had charged the chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party, Robert “Robin” Hayes, in a bribery and corruption case that also involved two businessmen and another state party official.

Hayes, 73, is charged with conspiracy to commit honest services wire fraud, bribery, and lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Justice Department said.

A former U.S. Congress member, Hayes led the state party between 2011 and 2013, when it won a dominant majority in the state legislature, and again since 2016.

His lawyers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Reporting by Andy Sullivan; Editing by Susan Thomas

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