DONNA, Texas – A campaign manager wanted his candidate on the Donna Independent School District board so badly, he allegedly paid $10 per vote, either in cash or cocaine.
Business Insider reports Francisco “Frankie” Garcia is accused of “conspiring to buy votes, paying for votes, and aiding and abetting others to buy votes.”
A news release by the U.S. Department of Justice provides more details:
According to the indictment, during the November 2012 general election, Garcia worked as a campaign manager for four candidates to the Donna School Board. During that time, he allegedly bought votes and worked with other campaign workers to pay voters and to offer to pay voters in this election to vote for particular candidates. The indictment alleges that Garcia paid voters by giving the voters either cocaine or cash in exchange for their votes.
“On or about November 6, 2012, Person B brought three voters to the polls to vote for candidates in the Donna School Board election,” the indictment reads, according to The Monitor. “Garcia paid the voters for voting by dropping $30 into the car in which they were seated, through an open car window, after they voted.”
Garcia allegedly paid voters either a dime bag of cocaine or $10 per vote, according to the paper.
Garcia was arrested at his home in Alton, Illinois.
According to the DOJ, three other campaign workers – Rebecca Gonzalez, 44, and Diana Balderas Castaneda, 48, both of Donna, Texas, and Guadalupe Escamilla, 72, of Weslaco, Texas – previously pleaded guilty to vote-buying charges stemming from the same election.
Assistant U.S. Attorney James Leo did not identify the candidates the individuals assisted.