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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Another Charlie Crist donor headed for slammer



U.S. Attorney Robert O’Neill announced today that Lee County real estate broker Greg Eagle, who is the father of state Rep. Dane Eagle, R-Cape Coral, pleaded guilty to four counts of bank fraud, one count each of mail fraud and wire fraud.

Greg Eagle faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison on each of the six counts, and a fine of up to $1 million. He will also be ordered to pay back money he ripped off his victims.

In 2006, Eagle put $1-million into a third-party political group, Floridians for a Better and Brighter Florida, before the September primary. The money later was transferred to another group that helped Crist secure the Republican gubernatorial nomination.

Eagle joins Scott Rothstein, Jim Greer, and Alan Mendelsohn as other high-profile bundlers of campaign cash for Crist who now face jail time. Crist and Eagle were close. The former governor stayed at his Useppa Island home. Eagle's son, Dane, was a travel aide for Crist.

Dane Eagle, 29, ran for the state House last year and won.

On Thursday, he released this statement: “While I cannot control the actions or choices of those around me, I am deeply saddened by the circumstances facing my father,” Eagle said. “We are hopeful his cooperation in the ongoing investigation will help to bring closure to everyone affected by this case – including my family. As the State Representative for House District 77, I remain committed to serving my constituents and earning the trust they have placed in me.”

Dane, who was not named in the investigation, works as a real estate broker with Eagle Realty, which is where Greg Eagle is still listed as one of the directors. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Greg Eagle mortgaged trust property without the knowledge of the other beneficiaries.

[Last modified: Thursday, March 14, 2013 6:30pm]


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