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County Commissioner A.C. Cuellar claims unreported spending tainted Democratic primary

Hidalgo County Precinct 1 Commissioner A.C. Cuellar filed a lawsuit against Weslaco school board president David Fuentes on Wednesday.

Hidalgo County Precinct 1 Commissioner A.C. Cuellar filed a lawsuit against Weslaco school board president David Fuentes on Wednesday, claiming the Democratic Party primary was tainted by unreported donations and spending.

Fuentes narrowly defeated Cuellar during the Democratic Party primary in March after a hard-fought campaign to represent eastern Hidalgo County.

Cuellar filed the lawsuit Wednesday morning, claiming Fuentes failed to report campaign donations and spending.

According to the lawsuit:

10. At various times through calendar years 2015 and 2016, Defendant Fuentes hid various campaign contributions and expenditures from public scrutiny.
11. Defendant Fuentes failed to report approximately $28,000 in campaign contributions in his report ending December 31, 2015.
12. Defendant Fuentes failed to report approximately $11,000 in campaign expenditures in his report ending January 21, 2016.
13. Defendant Fuentes failed to report approximately $1,700 in campaign expenditures in his report ending February 20, 2016.
14. Defendant Fuentes failed to report approximately $55,000 in campaign expenditures and/or $55,000 in contributions received via credit card charges for good and/or services in his report ending June 30, 2016.
15. Defendant Fuentes failed to report in-kind contributions regarding the use of the Tierra Santa Golf Club on multiple dates, in both 2015 and 2016, for purposes of fundraisers. Either Defendant Fuentes paid for use of the golf course and failed to disclose it, or Defendant Fuentes received in-kind contributions of significant value that he failed to list in his campaign finance reports.
16. In the course of the campaign Defendant Fuentes allegedly loaned his campaign approximately $400,000 in personal funds. Based upon information and belief, Defendant Fuentes failed to accurately and transparently report the true underlying source of the loans in question.

Monitor newspaper reporter Naxiely Lopez first reported the lawsuit on Twitter.

The lawsuit asks the judge to award Cuellar twice the amount of unreported contributions, twice the amount of unreported spending and attorney's fees.

Cuellar referred a request for an interview to his attorney, who couldn't immediately be reached for comment. Fuentes couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

Check back for updates.

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