An illegal immigrant living near San Antonio pleaded guilty this week to fraud and identity theft charges after admitting he used a citizen’s identity to vote.
The American Mirror reports,
Sixty-three-year-old Enrique Salazar Ortiz reportedly voted in numerous elections over the past 24 years using the name Jesse H. Vargas Jr. – a former San Antonio resident who moved to California decades ago, the San Antonio Express News reports.
“He’s been voting since at least 1994,” Bexar County elections administrator Jacque Callanen said.
Federal agents raided Ortiz’s suburban San Antonio home in August 2017 after his application to renew a passport with Vargas’ name was flagged for potential fraud. Investigators realized two men who did not look alike were using the same name and date of birth. Ortiz told agents he purchased documents with Vargas’ name for $20 and has used it ever since. He obtained a passport with the information in 2006, which he used to travel, and admitted to voting in the last presidential election, records show.
“When asked if he had ever voted, at first Mr. Salazar Ortiz was hesitant to answer, but when confronted with voting records, he indicated that he voted in the most recent election,” according to his plea deal cited by the News.
Ortiz would not divulge how many times he committed voter fraud, but a relative of the real Vargas said the 57-year-old moved out of Bexar County as a teen, the Associated Press reports.
Ortiz pleaded guilty to making a false statement in a passport application, voter fraud, and aggravated identity theft during a hearing before U.S. District Judge Fred Biery on Thursday, when he admitted he was born in Veracruz, Mexico and is not a legal citizen.
Biery asked Ortiz directly whether he knew he was breaking the law by casting a ballot.
“Unfortunately, yes, I knew,” he said.
More at The American Mirror