Drug trafficker testifies he once bribed current Cameron County DA
Fri, 09 Aug 2013 18:32:06 GMT —
A convicted drug trafficker has testified that he once bribed Cameron County District Attorney Luis Saenz when Saenz was a special prosecutor.
Federal prosecutors called Carlos Justino Ramos as a witness against attorney Eduardo "Eddie" Lucio.
Charged with racketeering and other corruption-related crimes, Lucio is accused of participating in the Cameron County cash for court favors scandal.
Ramos, who goes by the name Justin Ramos, once worked for former Cameron County District Attorney Armando Villalobos.
The 39-year-old Brownsville man once ran for city commission but dropped out of the race once his criminal past was made public.
Ramos is currently serving 72 months in federal prison for trafficking 2,000 pounds of marijuana.
On the witness stand, Ramos testified that he often brought cases to Lucio because Armando Villalobos told him to and that Ramos would get a referral fee.
Lucio and Villalobos were once partners in law practice before Villalobos became district attorney.
Ramos testified that Lucio represented him in at least two criminal cases.
The convicted drug trafficker said he once paid $3,000 to Villalobos and $1,000 to then-special prosecutor Luis Saenz to avoid prison time.
Voters in Cameron County elected Saenz as district attorney in November 2012.
Saenz declined to comment about the allegations but told the Brownsville Herald that he denies them.
Statements made in open court also reflect that Saenz denies the allegations.
Get LIVE updates from the courtroom on Twitter at @SergioChapa.