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Judge orders new election to be held in Hidalgo

The lawsuit claimed illegal assistance with mail-in ballots in the June 2016 runoff election. The lawsuit also claimed that non-residents and ineligible people cast ballots in the Place 5 race.

On Monday evening, a judge ordered a new election to be held for Hidalgo City Council Place 5 following a mail-in ballot lawsuit filed by candidate Gilberto Perez.

The lawsuit claimed illegal assistance with mail-in ballots in the June 2016 runoff election. The lawsuit also claimed that non-residents and ineligible people cast ballots in the Place 5 race.

The seat is currently held by councilman Oziel Treviño. Perez lost the seat by just six votes in the runoff election.

Upwards of 110 people were subpoenaed to testify. About 30 people took the stand.

Most of the witnesses called to the stand testified that they received voting assistance when they did not actually require assistance. They claimed campaign workers insisted they vote for the slate sponsored by city councilman Rudy Franz. One person claimed they were paid by a campaign worker to register others at her home who did not live in the city of Hidalgo.

The new election is expected to take place on, or before, March 6.

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