Source: Bipartisan Report
Wayne Simmons, 62, has been a regular guest on Fox News and has served as an intelligence advisor in Afghanistan and in the U.S. Army. There’s only one problem; he got all those jobs as a result of a lie.
Simmons, who falsely claimed he had “spent 27 years working for the Central Intelligence Agency,” has pleaded guilty “to major fraud against the government, wire fraud, and a firearms offense.” It turns out Simmons isn’t an intelligence expert at all, but rather a convicted felon with two firearms convictions and an unspecified conviction from Maryland under his belt already. And it looks like he can add a few more to that list.
The Department of Justice issued a release on Friday:
‘Simmons admitted he attempted to con his way into a position where he would have been called on to give real intelligence advice in a war zone. His fraud cost the government money, could have put American lives at risk, and was an insult to the real men and women of the intelligence community who provide tireless service to this country. This case is a prime example of this office’s ongoing commitment to vigorously prosecute government fraud and threats to national security.’
Paul M. Abbate, the Assistant Director in charge of the FBI’s Washington field office, said that,
‘Mr. Simmons lied about his criminal history and CIA employment in order to fraudulently obtain government contracts, and separately, defrauded a victim through a phony real estate investment deal. With these criminal actions, Mr. Simmons abused the trust of others, both in and outside of government, for his own personal financial gain. I commend the work of the talented FBI personnel and prosecutors who vigorously pursued this case and brought about today’s guilty plea.’
His wire fraud charge stems from an incident where he defrauded a victim out of $125,000, in connection with a bogus real estate investment scam. He sent her monthly payments to make it appear as if her investment was paying off, and repeatedly lied about the location of her money. Simmons admitted he spent the money on personal concerns and there was never any real estate to begin with.
The aforementioned firearms charges originate from two weapons found in his possession. Simmons was prohibited from owning firearms because of his two previous felony convictions.
Simmons was part of Accuracy In Media’s (AIM) “Citizens’ Commission,” which was part of the media’s successful push to get the U.S. government to formally investigate the Benghazi attack. While serving in that capacity, he appeared on Fox and falsely told viewers that the Obama administration had decided “to not rescue our former CIA operatives and our military” in Libya.
Fox News affirmed that he had appeared on the network, under the false pretense of being an expert in national security and terrorism, but he was allegedly never employed by the network and was never paid, either. According to Bret Baier,
‘Government contractor and occasional Fox News guest Wayne Simmons has been charged with lying about his supposed career with the C.I.A. Prosecutors say Simmons broke the law by lying about his credentials on applications for consulting work. Simmons made appearances on Fox as a national security and terrorism expert. However, he was never employed by the channel and was never paid by Fox.’
After Simmons was arrested, AIM removed all references to him from their website.