In San Antonio, Texas Senator Carlos Uresti was found guilty in federal court of twenty felony charges for criminal fraud. Another defendant, Gary Cain, was found guilty of the same. The plan was to remove Uresti from all his charges immediately after the trial was over. The only step left was to procure his resignation. That hasn’t stopped him from publicly announcing the intention to keep his seat warm, and thus far he continues to serve.
Uresti and Cain were accused and convicted for defrauding investors in FourWinds Logistics, a company that dissolved in 2015. The company flipped sand that was used in fracking. The two men will be sentenced on June 25, and they could spend years in prison for the crime. In addition, they may have to pay millions in fines.
The trial ran for weeks, and the jury deliberated for eleven hours before deciding Uresti’s fate. During the trial, a pattern of wrongdoing was unveiled for the public to see–and it was shocking to all. The testimony revealed criminal activity involving sex, drugs, and prostitutes at FourWinds Logistics. The company’s former CEO pled guilty to similar criminal fraud charges. CEO Stan Bates had used money from investors for himself instead of for the company.
Uresti plans to appeal the verdict.
The Texas Democratic Party, Texas Senate Democratic Caucus Chairman Jose Rodriguez, and U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Texas John Bash don’t want to wait. Although Uresti has said he expected a different verdict and that he’s “disappointed”, that hasn’t stopped the aforementioned individuals and organizations from calling for his immediate resignation for the good of their constituents.
Not surprisingly, Republicans agree. James Dickey, the Republican Party of Texas Chairman, agreed with the call for Uresti’s resignation, acknowledging the need for integrity in those elected to serve their communities.
Uresti’s defense team tried to convince the jury that FourWinds was already going under before Uresti was made aware of the internal strife facing the company. The jury didn’t buy this argument. Uresti’s 21 year career in political office won’t end until the appeals process does. He won’t be forced out of office until the verdict is untouchable.