Former IL Congressman Mel Reynolds arrested in Zimbabwe

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Photo Credit: The Herald

Former Illinois Congressman Mel Reynolds has been arrested in Zimbabwe for alleged immigration violations and possessing pornographic material.

The Herald newspaper in Zimbabwe cites a source. who says Reynolds’ visa expired in December, and he has been living in the country illegally since then.

The paper says Reynolds was in Zimbabwe since last November working as a middleman for foreign investors in the tourism industry. Reynolds also reportedly had an unpaid bill of $24,000 at two hotels.

He was arrested Monday by police detectives and immigration officials at the Bronte Garden Hotel in Harare.

The Herald also reports the former congressman shot hundreds of pornographic pictures and videos in his hotel room.

Possession of pornography is a crime in Zimbabwe.

In 1994, Reynolds was indicted for sexual assault and criminal sexual abuse for a relationship with a 16-year-old volunteer during his 1992 campaign. Reynolds was convicted in 1995 on sexual assault and solicitation of child pornography charges and resigned the same year.

While serving a five-year prison sentence, Reynolds was convicted of  bank fraud and lying to federal investigators, adding 78 months to his prison term. His sentence was commuted by President Bill Clinton in 2001.

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