Miguel G. Ortiz-Vélez, a Democrat-alligned Puerto Rico mayor, is facing fraud charges relating to the conspiracy to steal millions in federal funds, just months after Puerto Rican politicians appeared on CNN and blamed President Trump for mishandling the Puerto Rico hurricane disaster response.
Update: This article, published on July 15 2018, originally alleged that San Juan mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz was the Puerto Rico mayor facing fraud charges over the conspiracy to steal millions in federal funds. This was incorrect.
According to a DOJ press release from July 5 of this year, it was the mayor of the municipality of Sabana Grande, Miguel G. Ortiz-Vélez, who had “been indicted and arrested for his participation in a conspiracy to steal federal funds involving fraudulently obtained contracts from the PR Department of Education.”
Despite the fact that the U.S. government sent emergency workers, supplies and huge amounts of money to the territory, its Democrat-allied politicians still openly criticized the president — and the left-leaning mainstream media happily spread the “blame Trump” narrative.
As comparisons to George W. Bush and Hurricane Katrina grew, figures like San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz attacked Trump for supposedly mishandling the disaster response, despite the fact that emergency management experts praised the president and FEMA’s actions.
“What is really nasty is that anyone would turn their back on the Puerto Rican people,” Yulín Cruz declared at the time, even wearing a T-shirt labeled “NASTY” — where did she get it during a major storm? — as part of a petty jab at the U.S. president.
Liberals across the United States, glued to CNN, cheered the San Juan mayor and declared her a national hero. “We are dying, and you (Trump) are killing us with the inefficiency and the bureaucracy,” she said during a television conference in early October.
Western Journal reports: Fast forward to this week. It turns out that sure enough, there was plenty of “inefficiency and bureaucracy” in Puerto Rico … but it looks like the island’s own liberal politicians were likely the ones behind it.
According to the Associated Press, a Puerto Rican mayor and two additional island officials have now been charged with corruption.
Although the alleged crimes go back before Hurricane Maria made landfall in the Caribbean, the arrests paint a dire picture of widespread corruption and misuse of government funds during the same general time frame as the disaster.
“The suspects are the mayor of the southwest town of Sabana Grande and the former directors of finance for the northern town of Toa Baja,” the AP reported.
“U.S. Attorney Rosa Emilia Rodriguez told reporters that the former officials from Toa Baja are accused of using nearly $5 million worth of federal funds to pay the town’s public employees and municipal contractors,” the newswire continued.
“Not only is that illegal, it’s immoral,” Rodriguez added.
Puerto Rico officials are accused of taking millions of dollars that was granted by the United States for assistance programs and re-directing it wherever they saw fit, such as taking $2.5 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and using it to pay town employees.
At the center of the illegal scheme is Miguel Ortiz Vélez, who served as mayor. Ortiz Vélez belongs to the Popular Democratic Party, which is affiliated with the more well-known Democrat party in the mainland United States.
Guess who else belongs to the same liberal PDP political group: Carmen Yulín Cruz, the person who was blaming Trump for hurricane deaths while her own party was defrauding taxpayers and laundering aid money. Is anyone surprised?
There may be more arrests to follow, as well. Government officials said that more corruption is suspected, and additional Puerto Rican officials are under scrutiny.
“Rodriguez said the investigation into alleged corruption in Toa Baja is ongoing because officials believe other people are involved,” the AP confirmed.
The hurricane that devastated Puerto Rico was certainly a tragedy, and many lessons about disaster preparedness can be learned from that incident.
However, it’s abundantly clear that widespread corruption and incompetence in Puerto Rico was a major part of the chaos. That corruption doesn’t point to Donald Trump … it leads right to the same leftist Democrats who were trying to point fingers the entire time.