Federal Grand Jury Indicts Maverick County Commissioner Eliaz Maldonado
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 06, 2012|
In Del Rio this morning, Maverick County Precinct One Commissioner Eliaz Maldonado, age 52 of Eagle Pass, Texas, surrendered to federal authorities after a federal grand jury indicted him this week in connection with an alleged bribery, kickback, and bid-rigging scheme, announced United States Attorney Robert Pitman and FBI Special Agent in Charge Armando Fernandez.
The federal grand jury indictment, returned yesterday, charges Maldonado with four counts of wire fraud and two counts of receiving bribes. The indictment alleges that in 2010 and 2011, Maldonado, through his employees, manipulated the bidding process to guarantee that contractors he chose would be awarded Maverick County construction contracts. Those contractors deposited the checks issued to them by Maverick County and then made cash payments to Maldonado. According to the indictment, the private contractors submitted inflated bids to Maverick County in order for there to be sufficient funds to perform the construction work, make a profit, and pay the bribe to Maldonado.
Upon conviction, Maldonado faces up to 20 years in federal prison for each wire fraud charge and up to 10 years in federal prison for each bribery charge. Maldonado appeared before Magistrate Judge Victor Roberto Garcia this morning in Del Rio for his initial appearance and was granted a $50,000 bond.
This ongoing investigation is being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Texas Department of Public Safety. Individuals who have first-hand information about corruption, fraud, or bribery related to Maverick County are urged to contact the FBI at (210) 225-6741.
Assistant United States Attorney Michael Galdo is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
An indictment is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.