Fla. congressman to resign after cocaine scandal

FILE - In this July 9, 2013 file photo, Rep. Henry "Trey" Radel, R-Fla. speaks in Washington. A spokesman for Radel says the congressman will resign after pleading guilty to cocaine-possession charges last year. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)
FILE - In this July 9, 2013 file photo, Rep. Henry "Trey" Radel, R-Fla. speaks in Washington. A spokesman for Radel says the congressman will resign after pleading guilty to cocaine-possession charges last year. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

MIAMI (AP) — The Florida congressman who pleaded guilty to cocaine-possession charges last year will resign, his spokesman said Monday, after several GOP leaders requested that he step down.

Rep. Trey Radel will send a letter to House Speaker John Boehner, spokesman Dave Natonski said. Politico first reported the freshman Republican’s upcoming resignation.

On Nov. 20, Radel pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of cocaine possession and was sentenced to a year of probation. He admitted to purchasing 3.5 grams of cocaine from an undercover officer Oct. 29 in Washington.

Several GOP leaders, including Gov. Rick Scott, had asked him to resign. But Radel had pledged to stay in office and rebuild constituents’ trust after completing in-patient treatment for drug and alcohol abuse.

He entered rehab on Nov. 21.

Radel had been in office for 10 months when charged. His district includes the Gulf Coast cities of Fort Myers and Naples.

The House Ethics Committee announced last month that it was launching a formal investigation of the congressman.

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