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Lawyer for former top lawmaker in Michigan House expects he will be charged

The lawyer for Lee Chatfield, the former leader of the Michigan House, said Tuesday that prosecutors plan to file charges against Chatfield for financial crimes.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Prosecutors plan to file charges of financial crimes against the former leader of the Michigan House, his lawyer said Tuesday.

Attorney General Dana Nessel said she would speak to reporters in the state capital at 2 p.m. EDT. Her office disclosed no other details.

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Lee Chatfield, a Republican who is no longer a state lawmaker, was House speaker in 2019 and 2020 when the GOP controlled the chamber.

"We've learned that the charges are financial in nature," Chatfield's attorney, Mary Chartier, told The Associated Press. "We're prepared to fight them each and every step of the way."

"It took almost 2 1/2 years for the AG's office to come up with charges. It's going to be pretty flimsy if it took that long," Chartier said.

Chatfield has been under investigation since his sister-in-law said he sexually assaulted her. He has denied the allegations and said they had a consensual affair.

"We've learned there is no CSC charge or something like that," Chartier told AP, referring to criminal sexual conduct.

Two people who were top aides to Chatfield when he ran the House were charged last year with crimes, including embezzlement from nonprofit funds created for political purposes. Rob and Anne Minard have pleaded not guilty.

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