Saturday, April 21, 2012

State Attorney Report on David Rivera

Chief Assistant State Attorney Jose J. Arrojo and Assistant State Attorney Howard R. Rosen have finished their investigation of Rep. David Rivera. No charages will be filed against Rivera. That doesn't mean that Rivera did not break the law. The report presents extremely damning evidence on how Rivera unethically abused his office for financial gain. Rivera used campaign money to live lavishly.
During the same time periodreviewed, the subject charged hundreds of thousands of dollars in cost associated with extensive state and national travel to his four personal credit card accounts Other costs associated with travel of friends, clothing, and entertainment were also charged to these credit card accounts The subject engaged multiple credit card transactions each week and made thousands of charges to his four credit card accounts during the review period. Therefore, the subject repeatedly wrote checks directly from the three campaign bank accounts to pay off the expenditures charged with owing on his personal credit cards. Alternatively, the subject wrote checks from the campaign bank accounts and deposited the checks into his personal bank account, thereafter writing checks from his personal bank account to pay off expenditures charged and owing on his credit cards.
This is stealing money. There is no two ways about it. It appears that Rivera, like his friend Marco Rubio, double-billed for travel. The State Attorney's office felt they could not prosecute Rivera for this offense based on the State v. Maloy decision.
It appears that on several occasions, the subject may have been paid for official travel as an elected representative by the state and then was also reinbursed for the same travel from his campaign accounts. Accordingly, we focused on these transactions as potential theft from the state.
The question that has never been answered is what happened to the over-billed money Rubio and Rivera received. A plane ticket needs to be bought only once. Where did the second money billed for the same plane ticket go. Rubio and Rivera have refused to give a straight answer on the double-billing question. The State Attorney's office wanted to charge Rivera under Florida's RICO laws. They felt they didn't have a strong enough case. However, state attorneys made it clear that they believed Rivera was breaking the law.
More specifically, the subject repeatedly and intentionally committed multiple instances of theft by converting funds in his campaign depositories and using them for purposes otherwise not permitted by law.
The State Attorney's Office cite the statute of limitations. The truth is it is hard in Florida to convict an elected official. Florida Senate members Gary Siplin and Jim Norman are a testament to how crooked politicians thrive in this state.

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