Former Calif. Congressional Candidate Convicted for Obstructing Justice over Letter to Latino Voters
" ... His campaign got in hot water when it mailed a letter to thousands of Latino voters, warning them that immigrants could face jail time or deportation if they voted. ... "
Susan Valot | KUOR (S. California public radio) | December 7, 2010
A federal jury in Orange County has convicted a former Republican congressional candidate in a case related to letters his campaign sent to Latino voters. The jury reached its decision this afternoon in Santa Ana.
Republican Tan Nguyen challenged Democrat Loretta Sanchez for her congressional seat four years ago.
His campaign got in hot water when it mailed a letter to thousands of Latino voters, warning them that immigrants could face jail time or deportation if they voted.
At first, Nguyen blamed a campaign worker for the mailing. But he later said that the translation wasn’t very good - and that he meant for it to say that ILLEGAL immigrants could not vote.
Prosecutors did not file any charges directly related to the letter, although some people claimed Nguyen sent it to discourage Latino voters from going to the polls.
But federal prosecutors went after Nguyen for obstruction of justice because he allegedly lied to investigators during their investigation into the letter.
The first trial ended in a hung jury. This time around, a jury found Nguyen guilty of one count of obstruction of justice. Jurors could not reach a verdict, though, on a second obstruction of justice count.