Commissioner speaks out over alleged ballot scandal
MIAMI (WSVN) -- A county commissioner is trying to clear his name after a voting scandal has reportedly attracted the FBI.
Officials are conducting an investigation into the manipulation of absentee ballots, votes and voters in exchange for money.
Miami-Dade County Commissioner Esteban Bovo made his way into the State Attorney's Office Thursday to answer questions about a growing absentee ballot scandal in his district.
Bovo said he has nothing to do with any of it. "I thought it was very important for me to go in there and show my evidence that I had no knowledge of what was going on," said Bovo. "I have not been the target of this investigation. I'm not a participant of what is going on, and I thought it was important to cooperate with them."
According to Bovo, he wanted to talk to public corruption investigators after reports of detailed numerous exchanges between so-called ballot brokers and judicial candidates. Those candidates claim they were approached by individuals who said they could deliver votes in exchange for cash. The report came out one month after a Bovo aid collected a suspicious bundle of ballots at his Hialeah office.
Bovo is promising full transparency in a probe that has reportedly piqued the interest of the FBI. "For me, it was just important to go on my own accord, without them calling me or without them telling me to come in and cooperate with something that our community takes very seriously."
This is the latest development in a scandal that started last month. Fifty-six-year-old Deisy Cabrera of Hialeah, turned herself in 12 days before the August primary.
Investigators said she illegally collected and filled out ballots from nursing homes and assisted-living facilities.
Cabrera has been charged with absentee-ballot fraud, a third degree felony.
The State Attorney's office has not commented. The FBI has not confirmed or denies involvement in the investigation. Commissioner Bovo is not facing any charges.
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