Disgraced Former US Congressman Arrested in Zimbabwe

Melvin Reynolds
Melvin Reynolds

Former Rep. Melvin Jay Reynolds (D-Ill.) was arrested Monday in Zimbabwe on suspicion of pornography possession and an immigration charge, the Associated Press reports.


Police detectives and immigration officers arrested Reynolds at a hotel, and he is currently being detained and will appear in court soon, immigration official Ario Mabika told the AP.

According to the news wire, the 62-year-old disgraced lawmaker brought models from the country and other women to his hotel room and took photographs and videos.

The AP reports that when he was being arrested, he demanded to be given his cellphone and laptop, complaining about his treatment and calling for U.S. sanctions against President Robert Mugabe.

Back in 1995, Reynolds resigned from Congress after being convicted of 12 counts of statutory rape, obstruction of justice and solicitation of child pornography. While still in prison he was further convicted of bank and campaign fraud, the AP notes. In 2001, President Bill Clinton commuted the former Rhodes scholar’s sentence.

If convicted in Zimbabwe, he could get up to two years in prison or a sizable fine for the pornography, as well as be deported for breaking the country’s immigration laws.

Read more at Politico.