Guilty Verdicts Across the Board Against Defendants in Anaudi Case
SAN JUAN—After 14 hours of deliberation, a jury of six women and six men today reached a guilty verdict Friday against four defendants who were involved with former Popular Democratic Party (PDP) fundraiser Anaudi Hernández Pérez in a wide-ranging fraud scheme at several government offices.
The defendants were found guilty on all 14 charges, which included conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bribery, among others. The case has received plenty of attention on the island due to the relationship of Hernández Pérez, one of the key witnesses in the case, with leading local politicians and public officials, most of them from the PDP.
The guilty defendants are Sally López Martínez, former head of the Workforce Development Administration of (ADL by its Spanish acronym); Ivonne Nieves Falcón, former vice president of the Puerto Rico Aqueducts & Sewers Authority (Prepa); her sister Marielis Falcón, and Glenn Rivera Pizarro, a former assistant to the administrator of the House of Representatives.
For 20 days, the federal prosecution and defense presented evidence to the jury against the four defendants. The presentation began August 23 with the initial reports of federal prosecutors and defense attorneys. In total, the government sat 30 prosecution witnesses, as well as six other defense witnesses.
The federal prosecution, represented by Timothy Henwood and José Capó Iriarte, sat three key witnesses: Anaudi Hernández, his partner Héctor Vargas and Víctor Burgos Cotto. The three were indicted by the grand jury in the same case but pled guilty and agreed to cooperate. The three main witnesses of the federal prosecutors sought to prove the three alleged schemes corrupt orchestrated by Hernández Pérez with the other defendants in the ADL, Prepa and the House of Representatives.
According to the indictment issued by a federal grand jury in December 2015, Sally López and Ivonne López Falcón faced charges of conspiracy to commit fraud and wire fraud federal programs.
In the case of López, she faced another charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and deprive the people of their honest services, a charge of wire fraud and three additional charges of wire fraud and deprive the people of their honest services. She was also charged with one count of bribery.
Meanwhile, Ivonne Falcón faced three other charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and deprive the people of their honest services, a charge of bribery and one count of extortion agaisnt Ramón Crespo, a Prepa contractor.
Her sister Marielis was charged only with one count of extortion against Crespo.
Meanwhile, Glenn Rivera Pizarro faced two counts: conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of misuse of public funds.