"Conservative bad girl" Ana Alliegro was sentenced to not much more than a slap on the wrist today for her role in the David Rivera campaign corruption scandal. After pleading guilty, she'll get off with time served and six months of house arrest followed by two years of supervised release. Prosecutors had wanted at least a year in jail for Alliegro.
However Judge Robert Scola was adamant in his belief that former Rep. David Rivera was more to blame for the fiasco. Of course, Rivera has not yet been charged with anything.
In case you haven't been paying attention to the twisting scandal, back in 2012 a mysterious candidate named Justin Lamar Sternad popped up in the Democratic primary in District 26. Through a series of direct mail flyers he blasted Rivera's political foe Joe Garcia (who went on to win the election). After a series of investigations, it started to seem that Sternad was a ringer candidate with funding from still unexplained sources. Ana Alliegro, a Republican operative and close confidant of Rivera's, acted as his campaign manager. Alliegro fled to Nicaragua shortly after the scandal broke, but returned earlier this year and has spent the past six months in prison.
Sternad and now Alliegro have been sentenced to relatively light punishments. Rivera is the last man standing, but could ultimately go down the hardest.
According to CBS Miami, prosecutor Thomas Mulvihill informed the Judge that Alliegro told him that she was told by Rivera to contact Sternad, and that Rivera was funding the campaign.
"Mr. Rivera should be held most responsible," Scola said during his sentencing. "The man should come forward and not the let the woman take the blame."
Alliegro has not indicated that she's willing to testify against Rivera, but because of her guilty plea she can no longer plead the fifth if she is ultimately subpoenaed in relation to a case against Rivera. Sternad has indicated that he would testify against Rivera.
Rivera has not yet been charged with anything in relation to the scandal, but now the ducks are all firmly in a row.
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