Arizona attorney general announces arrest of Nogales mayor on bribery, other charges
The mayor of Nogales was arrested Tuesday on multiple charges including bribery, theft, fraud and money laundering, Arizona’s attorney general said.
Mayor Octavio Garcia Von Borstel, 29, was taken into custody at his office at Nogales City Hall. Search warrants were executed at the mayor’s home, business and office.
The mayor’s father, Octavio Suarez Garcia, 59, of Nogales, was also indicted and arrested Tuesday. He faces several charges that include fraud, theft and money laundering.
Atttorney General Terry Goddard called the charges serious.
“Because some charges involve the official actions of an elected official, they violate the public trust,” Goddard said. “Both the mayor and his father will be held accountable and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”
Goddard’s office said FBI agents began investigating Garcia Von Borstel five months ago and determined he was soliciting Nogales businesses as early as February 2009 to hire him as a business consultant.
At least one business admitted to the FBI that it was paying the mayor to use his official position to obtain business contracts and, specifically, to obtain new City of Nogales contracts, circumventing either open bidding or proper application processes.
A news release said further investigation determined the mayor also received money from at least one business in exchange for using his official position to protect a contract the business owner had with the city and to assist the owner in obtaining an additional city contract.
Goddard alleges the mayor’s father, Garcia Suarez, was authorized to sell Western Union money orders from his money transmitter business, ACE Cash Express, in Nogales. The state says Garcia Suarez fraudulently reported that Western Union money orders worth $3.2 million were sold though there were no cash deposits to back them up.
The money orders were then cashed by Garcia Von Borstel and deposited into a bank account he controlled.
Of the $3.2 million, the father and son withdrew $565,000 for their personal use before the account was frozen, prosecutors said.
Garcia Von Borstel has been mayor of the southern Arizona city since April 2008.
The mayor did not immediately respond to an e-mail or a phone call from The Associated Press seeking comment.
Source: AP News
Mochila insert follows…
Trump has shrunk the White House entirely around himself: ‘It is a government of one’
President Donald Trump has cleared out all the constraints in his White House, which he's running much like the Trump Organization.
The president has chased away four national security advisers, three chiefs of staff, three directors of oval office operations and five communications directors -- an unprecedented amount of turnover for a modern president — and finds himself surrounded by compliant staffers and aides, reported Politico.
“It is a government of one in the same way in which the Trump Organization was a company of one,” said one former senior administration official.
Benny Gantz says he should be PM in Israel unity government
Benny Gantz, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's main opponent in the country's general election, said Thursday he should be prime minister in a unity government.
Gantz spoke to journalists after Netanyahu called for them to join together in a unity government as results from Tuesday's vote showed neither with an obvious path to form a majority coalition.
Gantz's centrist Blue and White is nevertheless two seats ahead of Netanyahu's right-wing Likud, according to results published by Israeli media with 97 percent of the vote counted.
Beto O’Rourke’s plan to legalize marijuana includes clemency for possession sentences and grants for those who already served time
For his latest policy proposal, the Democratic presidential candidate returns to a cause he has championed since his days on the El Paso City Council.
Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke on Thursday morning released a marijuana legalization plan that calls for clemency for everyone currently serving sentences for possession.
The former El Paso congressman also would push for a federal tax on the pot industry and put the revenue toward a "Drug War Justice Grant" for those formerly incarcerated for nonviolent marijuana offenses.