United States Attorney John E. Murphy and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge David Cuthbertson announced today that a federal grand jury has indicted 62-year-old New York businessman Joseph O’Hara and 55-year-old former El Paso Independent School District Associate Superintendent Tomas Gabaldon in connection with an El Paso corruption investigation.
The indictment, returned last week and unsealed on Monday, charges the individuals with one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and deprivation of honest services; one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and deprivation of honest services; and one count of mail fraud. The indictment alleges that between February 2003 and October 2007, O’Hara and an unindicted co-conspirator bribed Gabaldon as well as an EPISD trustee in order to secure and maintain a lucrative EPISD contract.
Most likely, the unindicted co-conspirator is cooperating with authorities and has implicated O’Hara and Gabaldon in order to work out a plea arrangement. The government may be using the unnamed co-conspirator as a witness against the two indicted, and probably used the story provided by the co-conspirator in order to convince a grand jury to issue the indictments against O’Hara and Gabaldon.
Each of the charges contained in the indictment call for up to 20 years in federal prison and a maximum $250,000 fine upon conviction.
Gabaldon, who turned himself into FBI agents yesterday in El Paso, is currently on a $25,000 unsecured bond. O’Hara, who turned himself into authorities in New York yesterday, is currently on a personal recognizance bond. No trial date has been scheduled.
Douglas McNabb and other members of the firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, Interpol Litigation, International Extradition and OFAC Litigation.
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