Two Donna School Board Members Indicted on Bribery and Attempted Extortion Charges
MCALLEN, TX—The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas unsealed an indictment today charging two elected members of the School Board of Donna with bribery and attempted extortion in connection with a services contract held by the Donna Independent School District (DISD). A private citizen who served as a middleman in the scheme also was charged.
U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson and Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division made the announcement.
Eloy Infante, 53, Elpidio Yanez Jr., 45, and Adrian Guerrero, 50, all from Donna, were charged in a four-count indictment returned Oct. 27, 2015, with one count of conspiracy, one count of attempted extortion and two counts of federal programs bribery. Infante and Yanez are both members of the Donna School Board and Guerrero is a private citizen.
According to the indictment, from February 2015 through May 2015, the defendants allegedly attempted to extort, and solicited and accepted bribes from, an individual whose company provided services to the DISD. Specifically, the indictment alleges that the defendants informed the individual that, in order for his company to keep its contract with the DISD, he needed to pay Infante and Yanez $10,000 each. The indictment alleges that both Infante and Yanez accepted partial payment of the $10,000, and that Guerrero served as the middleman for one of the payments.
This case was investigated by the FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Leo J. Leo III and Trial Attorney Monique Abrishami of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section are prosecuting the case.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence. A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.