Many Texas residents have probably heard that a man has been charged in connection with the mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue that claimed 11 lives on Oct. 27. The man faces 22 federal counts that carry the death penalty, and the U.S. attorney assigned to the case has asked the Department of Justice to allow the death sentence to be imposed. While the death penalty can be imposed for a number of crimes including murder, treason and espionage, only three federal inmates have been executed since 1988.
Four Texas women are facing criminal charges for alleged involvement in voter fraud. The four are accused of targeting senior voters in 2016 as part of an organized voter deception ring. The women would seek to obtain mail ballots for the elderly voters and then submit them for certain candidates. Arrests were made after an investigation by the state Attorney General's office. The names of the candidates who would allegedly receive votes from the scheme have not been released.
A Texas judge sentenced a former Edcouch Police Department lieutenant to 39 months in a federal prison on drug trafficking charges. The sentence was handed down on Oct. 2. The 43-year-old man entered a guilty plea in December 2017 to possessing more than 500 grams of powder cocaine with the intent to distribute after entering into a negotiated plea agreement with prosecutors. Official records reveal that before serving with the EPD, the man worked with the Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office and the Elsa, Santa Rosa, Weslaco, Progreso and La Villa police departments.
On Sept. 15, federal, state and local law enforcement officers arrested 14 people during a raid at a Texas pool hall. The defendants were allegedly involved in drug crimes and human trafficking.
Two brothers will be spending decades in federal prison in a plea agreement reached regarding charges they had been running a large scale drug operation from their homes for years. The arrests, prosecution and sentencing of the two, along with a third unrelated individual, are the product of ramped-up efforts by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the FBI and West Texas law enforcement officials to combat the illicit drug trade and go back as far as the beginning of 2015.
On June 26, a former Texas lawmaker was sentenced to 12 years in prison after he was convicted of running a large Ponzi scheme. The 54-year-old man had been convicted on 11 felony charges associated with the fraudulent scheme.
On May 17, a federal criminal complaint alleging that a Texas man was involved in a bank robbery was unsealed. The robbery reportedly occurred on April 5 at a First National Bank located in the 4300 block of Central Texas Expressway in Killeen.
A Texas resident who has allegedly committed a crime could face a misdemeanor or felony charge. In most cases, the level of a charge is determined by how much time behind bars a person could face if convicted. However, a prosecutor has flexibility when it comes to charging an individual. If a person is charged with a misdemeanor, he or she can generally expect to spend up to a year in jail if convicted.
Most investors in Texas know that decisions made by government regulators sometimes influence profits at companies. This concept is the crux of a federal criminal case against a former employee of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Officials say that he engaged in a form of insider trading when sharing government secrets, known as political intelligence, for the benefit of investors.