FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Justin Lamar Sternad, 35,  went from Congressional primary challenger to convicted criminal in the span of less than a year when he pleaded guilty to charges related to his campaign financing on Friday.

Sternad admitted that he received money from co-conspirators while running his Democratic primary campaign against U.S. Representative Joe Garcia. But, Sternad has been linked to former Republican Representative David Rivera.

The case centers on whether Sternad, an unknown Democrat, received thousands of dollars from the campaign of Rivera, a Republican. Rivera has repeatedly denied any connection but has also been the subject of a federal tax investigation.

While Sternad admitted his guilt Friday, he will not say who his co-conspirators are in open court because of the ongoing investigation, which he has agreed to cooperate with.

According to CBS4’s Ted Scouten, Sternad took a guilty plea without an agreement about a possible sentence.

Sternad will learn his fate when he is sentenced on May 31.

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