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View Full Version : Voters in school board election in TX town bribed with drugs to vote for candidates



pwaldo
02-17-2014, 10:27 PM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2545487/Voters-school-board-election-dirt-poor-Texas-town-bribed-cigarettes-alcohol-rides-buy-drugs-vote-Democratic-candidates.html


Federal authorities are investigating whether school board candidates in a small, dirt-poor town in Texas used cheap beer, drugs and cigarettes to buy votes.

The federal investigation into voter tampering in the tiny border-town of Donna - near the southern tip of Texas' border with Mexico - was revealed in late December, just days before the president of the town's school board is suspected of committing suicide.

So far, three people in Donna - which is so poor that several houses are without electricity and even running water - have been arrested by federal authorities in connection to the alleged voter tampering.

One of the women indicted, 48-year-old Diana Balderas Castaneda, admitted to authorities that she bribed roughly 10 people to vote for Democratic school board candidates during the 2012 election.

But authorities suspect these types of bribes began much earlier than the general election - Castaneda also told authorities that a school board candidate gave her $125 to give food and cash to primary voters in exchange for their vote.

According to charging documents obtained by ABCNews.com, she sometimes gave voters up to $20 per vote.

And in several cases, Castaneda told authorities, she paid voters in cigarettes or beer, or took voters to buy drugs after a campaign manager paid them for votes.

An unidentified witness told the FBI that in the days leading up to the 2012 election, Castaneda gave her a card with the names of candidates on it.

On the cards, she told federal investigators, 'the opposing candidates' names were crossed out.'

'After voting, Castaneda told Witness 2 she would meet him/her at the shed by Witness 2's friend's house that same day to pay Witness 2,' federal prosecutors allege in court documents. 'She paid Witness 2 $10 for voting for her candidates.'

Two others arrested as a result of the investigation are Guadalupe Escamilla, 72, and Rebecca Gonzalez, 44, each of whom was arrested in December and formally indicted last week.

Not long after the feds made their arrests, Donna school board President Alfredo Lugo was found dead in his home of an apparent hanging. It's unclear whether the women who were arrested worked for Lugo, and he was not specifically named in any of the charging documents against the women - nor were any other members of the school board involved with the vote-buying case.

Wickabee
02-17-2014, 10:46 PM
I'm sorry, what town was this and what is the job market like there?

pwaldo
02-18-2014, 09:28 PM
I'm sorry, what town was this and what is the job market like there?

Donna, TX

I don't know what the job market is like there but they should have an opening for a school board President....

gsj68
02-18-2014, 09:53 PM
Not long after the feds made their arrests, Donna school board President Alfredo Lugo was found dead in his home of an apparent hanging.any links to Clinton?
just sounds a little fishy and extreme

why bribe to get school prez position? pay? influence over education?

pwaldo
02-18-2014, 10:14 PM
just sounds a little fishy and extreme

Yeah unless he was looking at some serous jail time or something the suicide doesn't really make sense. Not like a suicide ever does but hanging yourself when you have other options isn't the best way to go out.

texansrangerfan73
02-18-2014, 10:17 PM
Thanks guys I live here in Donna & like everywhere else there is corruption but I doubt it's just in the school district.

duane1969
02-20-2014, 01:04 PM
why bribe to get school prez position? pay? influence over education?

In small towns being on the school board or being school board president is a very influential position. It is in my town.

Example: We had someone here run for school board the last election. She had huge expensive hand-painted signs and flyers everywhere to get a position that pays $0. Why? How? Simple. A local millionaire is her friend and they coach the local high school boys and girls basketball teams together. Her being on the school board would give him a guaranteed 1/5ths influence over the school system. Combined with his 2 friends that are on the school board he would essentially have a majority control on every issue he wanted that the school board voted on. Why all of that effort when he is just a coach? He and the high school principal don't get along. If he had a 3/5ths vote on the school board he could influence who is principal in the school he coaches at and make sure the new principal is someone he likes and gets along with.