NC political worker pleads not guilty to charges


RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A political operative accused of orchestrating an absentee ballot fraud operation in North Carolina has pleaded not guilty to separate federal charges.

Leslie McCrae Dowless Jr. is accused of hiding from the Social Security Administration over $100,000 in income for work performed for at least two candidates during the 2018 election.

No trial date was immediately set after Friday’s plea.

Dowless was at the center of a state investigation into illegal ballot harvesting in the 9th Congressional District campaign.

A trial on state charges against Dowless could happen this summer.

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