U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter and Margaret Hunter, the congressman's wife and former campaign manager, arrived to court separately but stood together while pleading not guilty Thursday to charges of illegally using the congressman's campaign account for personal expenses.
The California Republican was met with chants of "Lock him up" by more than a dozen protesters when he arrived at the federal courthouse in downtown San Diego Thursday morning.
The Hunters faced a judge to answer to charges in an indictment alleging they used more than $250,000 to finance family trips to Italy and Hawaii, golf outings, school tuition, theater tickets and even fast food purchases.
The indictment alleges they attempted to conceal the illegal spending in federal records.
Margaret Hunter arrived at the downtown courthouse separately. In court, the couple sat four seats apart.
Then, when the judge read the charges, the couple stood together at the podium and entered pleas of not guilty.
Bond was set for $15,000 for Duncan Hunter and $10,000 for Margaret Hunter.
The congressman was ordered to surrender two weapons registered to him by Monday and to submit to drug testing based on pre-trial services.
The defendants were ordered not to travel outside of the U.S.
Before the indictment released Tuesday, Hunter easily finished first in a June primary and established himself as a strong favorite to hold onto California's 50th Congressional District in San Diego and Riverside counties.
Hunter's attorney, Gregory A. Vega, claims there was political pressure to tarnish Hunter before the general election.