Democratic ex-Mayor faces conviction for ballot-rigging

The Democratic former mayor of San Luis, Arizona, who pleaded guilty to ballot fraud, is hoping for leniency in his sentence.

Guillermina Fuentes pleaded guilty in June to a single count of ballot fraud and admitted to collecting multiple early voting ballots during the 2020 election, Fox News reported Friday.

He then turned them over to a woman named Alma Juarez, who pleaded guilty in March. Juarez later dropped off the ballots at a local polling place.

“According to prosecutors, Fuentes used her status as a powerful local Democrat to run a ballot-picking scheme that collected ballots from voters in Arizona’s August 2020 primary,” Breitbart News reported in June.

In this July 7, 2020 file photo, a woman wearing gloves drops a mail-in ballot into a drop box in Hackensack, N.J. (Seth Wenig, File/AP)

“Prosecutors accused Fuentes of collecting and filling out ballots from voters as part of the scheme. In some cases, prosecutors allege Fuentes paid voters to let her collect their ballots,” the report said.

After Juarez pleaded guilty, she made a deal with prosecutors in exchange for probation.

Now, prosecutors want Yuma County Superior Court Judge Roger Nelson to sentence Fuentes to one year, but her attorneys disagree, and one claimed the other allegations against her were false.

Meanwhile, Assistant Attorney General Todd Lawson said the two women were caught on video outside a polling place looking at four ballots.

“The question is why (Fuentes) feels the need to put pressure on people in her community and control the flow of their ballot to the ballot box,” Lawson told Nelson. “This is a public integrity issue here,” Fox said.

Fuentes is a member of the Gadsden Elementary School Board. However, he will lose that position as a result of the guilty plea, Breitbart News reported on July 15.

The agency reported the extent of some of the problems with mail-in ballots nationwide:

Federal elections figures reveal about 28.4 million mail-in ballots have been lost “in the last four election cycles dating back to 2012.” According to the Pew Research Center analysis, there are potentially 24 million ineligible or inaccurate voter registrations on state voter rolls.

According to the Fox article, Nelson’s judicial assistant reportedly said he planned to give each woman 30 days in jail. Their sentencing is expected next week.

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