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FBI Arrests Two Presidio Officials on Federal Bribery Charges

The FBI on Thursday arrested two Presidio officials on federal bribery related charges. The two officials also face several counts of conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud. 

Presidio County Precinct 3 commissioner  Lorenzo Hernandez and Carlos Nieto, an official with the city of Presidio, were indicted Thursday. The two men face a total of 6 counts of federal charges, including bribery, fraud and deprivation of honest services.

“The individuals charged hold positions of public trust and will be held accountable," FBI agent Emmerson Buie, Jr., said in a statement. "The FBI is committed to aggressively investigating allegations of public corruption and, where warranted, seeking appropriate federal charges.”

Hernandez has been charged with two counts of bribery, one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, and two more counts of wire and honest services fraud, according to the FBI.  Nieto faces one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. He faces an additional count of honest services fraud.

For nearly the last two years, the indictment claims, Hernandez and Nieto sought to defraud Presidio County by ensuring a particular company would be selected for contract work with the county. As a result, according to the indictment, Hernandez and Nieto received $19,800 and $8,300, respectively.

Hernandez voted to give the company the contract on May 9.

Each bribery charge, officials say, carries a maximum sentence of ten years in federal prison if convicted. Each additional charge calls for up to 20 years. 

The two appear in a Midland courtroom Friday morning.

Carlos Morales is Marfa Public Radio's News Director.