Former House administrator pleads guilty in corruption scheme
SAN JUAN – Former House of Representatives Administrator Xavier González Calderón pleaded guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court for his role in a pay-to-play scheme involving businessman Anaudi Hernández and other former House employees.
González Calderón’s plea puts House Speaker Jaime Perelló in hot water as he was the one who authorized contracts for the speaker.
González Calderón pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit electronic fraud and electronic fraud to stop the government from having money and property after he awarded a contract to Hernández’s firm, 3 Comm Global, to install and provide service to the House’s telephone switchboard. Two other former House officials have also pleaded guilty in the scheme.
Hernández was Perelló’s political donor and member of his finance committee. The allegations are that 3 Comm Global obtained an advantage in the bidding process for the contract because the accused gave Hernández information about the other bids so he would know how to modify his own bid, which was modified six times. The switchboard did not operate properly but the company got more than $400,000 in payments from the House.
In a recently televised interview, Perelló said he has not engaged in any wrongdoing and blamed the opposition New Progressive Party for a campaign to discredit him. Perelló said he is not a target in the federal investigation.