News and Commentary

Pair Charged With Voter Fraud Over Scheme Involving Homeless And Voter Registration Forms
Voter registration forms at an early voting polling location at Dockweiler Beach for the 2020 Presidential election in Los Angeles, California, U.S., on Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020.
Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Two people, including a former potential mayoral candidate, have been charged in a voter fraud case where more than 8,000 fraudulent voter registration applications were allegedly submitted on behalf of homeless people in Los Angeles.

Between July and October, 53-year-old Carlos Antonio De Bourbon Montenegro, A.K.A. Mark Anthony Gonsalves, allegedly submitted more than 8,000 fraudulent voter registration applications, allegedly falsifying names, addresses, and signatures on nomination papers under penalty of perjury to run for mayor in Hawthorne, reported NBC Los Angeles on Tuesday.

Montenegro and his co-defendant Marcos Raul Arevalo “were trying to get the registrar’s office to send them mail in ballots for the fake voters. No votes were ever actually cast,” the report says. “The registrar caught on quickly and flagged the applications so nobody actually voted.”

Montenegro is facing 18 felony counts of voter fraud, 11 felony counts of procuring a false or forged instrument, two felony counts of perjury, one felony count of conspiracy to commit voter fraud, and nine misdemeanor counts of interference with a prompt transfer of a completed affidavit, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, the report noted.

Arevalo, NBC Los Angeles reported, has been charged with eight counts of voter fraud, one count of conspiracy to commit voter fraud, four counts of procuring and offering a false or forged instrument, and four misdemeanor counts of interference with a prompt transfer of a completed affidavit, per the DA’s office.

“The conspiracy charge alleges that Montenegro submitted and filed signed nomination papers containing 41 signatures and addresses to the city clerk this summer and that just 18 of the names, addresses and signatures on the nomination papers were validated by the Los Angeles County Registrar- Recorder’s Office,” the NBC Los Angeles report outlined, adding: “The conspiracy charge also alleges that Montenegro was subsequently issued write-in candidate nomination papers and that he ‘submitted and filed signed write-in candidate nomination papers containing 32 signatures and addresses for fictitious, non-existent or deceased person’ with the city clerk’s office. It further alleges that he and co-defendant Marcos Raul Arevalo and other unknown co-conspirators’ used three post office boxes in Hawthorne as well as Montenegro’s home address ‘as mailing addresses for over 8,000 voter registration applications for fictitious, non-existent or deceased persons, that were submitted for processing to the Los Angeles County Registrar- Recorder’s Office and the California Secretary of State.”

Montenegro is facing up to 15 years and eight months behind bars, and Arevalo is looking at a maximum of seven years.

According to the California Secretary of State website, there were 20,660,465 people registered to vote state-wide as of February, 2020. Of those registered, 9,361,582 were registered with the Democrat Party, 4,937,986 were registered Republicans, and 5,181,791 were registered with no party preference. About 31.5 million people live in the state, and 25,251,216 are eligible to vote.

Related: Michigan GOP Lawmakers Call For ‘Full Audit’ Of Election Results Over ‘Serious Allegations’ Of Error, Voter Fraud

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