HBPA FORMER FARM AND FIELD DIRECTOR PLEADS GUILTY TO CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT IDENTITY THEFT
CINDY ROMERO, a/k/a Cricket Romero, age 50, a resident of Metairie, Louisiana, pled guilty yesterday in federal court before U.S. District Judge Lance M. Africk to conspiracy to commit identity theft, announced U. S. Attorney Jim Letten.
According to court documents, CINDY ROMERO admitted that while employed by the Louisiana Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (HBPA), she conspired with Sean Alfortish, an attorney and HBPA president running for his second term, and Mona Romero, HBPA Executive Director, to rig the outcome of the HBPA March 2008 election by using Social Security numbers of HBPA members in connection with the federal crime of mail fraud.
According to the factual basis, in order for ballots to be counted as valid, they had to bear the Social Security number of a member eligible to vote and the ballot had to be received via the U.S. mail. ROMERO admitted she conspired with others to identify members unlikely to vote, falsified election ballots, enclosed the ballots in envelopes and marked the envelopes with the members’ Social Security numbers. She also admitted she travelled to various cities where likely nonvoters lived for the purpose of mailing the falsified election ballots from those cities.
ROMERO, faces a maximum penalty of five (5) years imprisonment, a $250,000 fine and three (3) years supervised release. Sentencing has been scheduled for March 24, 2011.
The case was investigated by agents from the U. S. Postal Inspection Service and the U. S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration, Dallas Regional Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorneys Eileen Gleason, G. Dall Kammer, and Patrice Harris Sullivan.
If you believe you have been a victim of fraud from a person or an organization soliciting relief funds on behalf of storm victims or have knowledge of waste, abuse, or allegations of mismanagement involving disaster relief operations, contact the National Center for Disaster Fraud toll free at: (866) 720-5721. You can also fax information to: (225) 334-4707 or e-mail it to: firstname.lastname@example.org