Voters return lawmaker to Capitol despite felony guilty plea

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – A Democratic state representative from Philadelphia who was just re-elected despite having pleaded guilty to a federal felony is back at work but not saying much about her case.

Rep. Leslie Acosta declined Monday to talk about her future, including the prospect of sentencing that could force her to resign or lead to her removal from office.

Acosta was secretly charged a year ago and on March 4 pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Her plea didn’t become public until mid-September. Acosta subsequently went on leave and hasn’t voted since.

She’s referring questions to her defense lawyer, Christopher Warren, who didn’t return messages seeking comment.

Lawyers say the felony conviction likely means Acosta can’t serve in the Legislature, but the conviction isn’t official until sentencing.

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