Report: More arrests coming in Donovan probe

With the Democratic and Republican primaries less than three weeks away in the 5th Congressional district, the campaign of former House Speaker Chris Donovan could be in for another rocky stretch.

According to a report from  the Hartford Courant, the FBI is expected to make more arrests today in a probe focusing on contributions made to Donovan’s campaign.

Robert Braddock Jr., a hired gun in Democratic politics brought in to run Donovan’s campaign finance operation, was arrested in late May on a criminal complaint as part of the same investigation. He was  indicted by a federal grand jury July 11.

Braddock is accused of working with at least three owners of roll-your-own tobacco shops who were trying to defeat a bill that would have imposed taxes and fees on their businesses. The indictment lays out an alleged conspiracy between Braddock, Raymond Soucy, a top corrections union official, three unidentified roll-your-own shop owners and two other campaign aides, identified by sources as Joshua Nassi and Sarah Waterfall, to provide money for the campaign in exchange for House Speaker Donovan killing the bill.

Donovan, once considered the runaway favorite to win the 5th district seat being vacated by U.S. Senate candidate Chris Murphy, faces a three-way primary Aug. 14 against former State Rep. Elizabeth Esty and Kent resident Dan Roberti.

The campaign of Republican candidate Lisa Wilson-Foley is also connected to a federal investigation concerning work done on behalf of the campaign by former Gov. John Rowland.

The other GOP candidates in the race are State Sen. Andrew Roarback, the party endorsed candidate; Navy veteran Justin Bernier; and businessman Mark Greenberg.

Ben Doody