Former NM Senator Faces More Fraud Charges

Former NM Senator Faces More Fraud Charges

A grand jury in Santa Fe indicted Griego on June 15 on the additional charges which include perjury, fraud, embezzlement and filing false campaign reports.

Former state senator Phil Griego, who is awaiting trial on bribery, fraud and perjury in connection with the 2014 sale of a state-owned building, has been indicted on 22 more felony charges for allegedly embezzling money from his campaign fund.

A grand jury in Santa Fe indicted Griego on June 15 on the additional charges which include perjury, fraud, embezzlement and filing false campaign reports.

The indictment alleged that on June 21, 2012, Griego embezzled $2,000 from his senate campaign fund. He then lied about the alleged embezzlement and filed false campaign reports, the indictment alleged.

Griego, a San Miguel County Democrat, is set to go to trial in late October on charges that he used his position as a lawmaker to pocket a $50,000 broker’s fee in the 2014 sale of a historic state-owned building.

In that case, Griego is charged with nine crimes, including bribery, fraud and perjury. The sale had to be approved by the Legislature, and state Attorney General Hector Balderas’ office alleges that Griego didn’t tell lawmakers that he had an interest in the property. After the sale, Griego received a $50,000 fee for monitoring the sale.

Griego resigned during the 2015 legislative session rather than face possible disciplinary action over the matter.

Balderas’ office has asked that the new charges be joined with the old ones because they are related and that Griego be tried on all of them at the same time.

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Dennis Domrzalski is managing editor of ABQ Free Press. Reach him at dennis@freeabq.com.

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Dennis Domrzalski is managing editor of ABQ Free Press. Reach him at dennis@freeabq.com.