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Ex-Texas congressman Steve Stockman pleads not guilty to violating federal election laws

HOUSTON – Former U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman plead not guilty during his court appearance Monday.

Stockman is accused of conspiring to violate federal election laws during his last term in office. It's a felony that could send him to federal prison if he's convicted.

[Details: Former Texas Congressman Steve Stockman accused of violating federal election law]

Federal prosecutors said that the former congressman had conspired with two former employees to funnel hundreds of thousands of dollars for his personal use.

According to the complaint, in 2011 Stockman set up a nonprofit called Life Without Limits in Las Vegas. Prosecutors said a single contributor donated $350,000 to the charity, which Stockman funneled back to himself through donations made by his employees.

[Details: Former Republican congressman Steve Stockman speaks out in federal court]

Stockman served two terms in Congress, from 1995 to 1997 and then again from 2013 to 2015. He resigned to run unsuccessfully against Sen. John Cornyn in the 2014 Republican primary.