Former mayor of La Joya, Jose “Fito” Salinas, Monday pleaded guilty to a federal charge of wire fraud. Salinas agreed to plead guilty just as a jury was being seated for his public corruption trial in McAllen federal court.
As part of the plea deal, prosecutors dropped two other wire fraud charges related to separate wrongful money-making schemes. The charge Salinas admitted to related to a lucrative public relations contract awarded to a friend of Salinas’ daughter, Frances Salinas.
Prosecutors say the contract was structured to financially benefit both then-mayor Salinas and his daughter. The 82-year-old former mayor is to be sentenced September 28th.