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Sunland Park woman pleads guilty to voter fraud

By Vanessa de la Viña, vanessa@kvia.com
Published On: Mar 13 2013 08:01:49 PM CDT
Updated On: Jul 15 2014 12:54:29 PM CDT

ABC-7's Vanessa de la Viña reports.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. -

Amidst the scandal and alleged corruption in Sunland Park were allegations of voter fraud in the mayoral election.

On Wednesday, Silvia Gomez pleaded guilty to voter fraud in connection to last year's Sunland Park municipal election.

Gomez admitted to registering voters who she knew were ineligible to vote in Sunland Park.

Some of those voters were already registered in El Paso. Others used Gomez's address to register.

Even after admitting her guilt, Gomez defended herself.

She told the judge she was authorized by the state to register people to vote, but said she was never trained.

"In reality, I don't know if I was doing right or wrong. I am remorseful for what I did. I did not know I'd be doing something wrong," Gomez told the judge. 

Gomez originally faced 12 felony charges. As part of her plea deal, nine of those were dismissed.

Before the judge decided her sentence, Gomez addressed the judge again.

"Your honor, I was never given a class on how to register people. All they did was give me a number. I never thought I was doing something wrong," Gomez said.

"Forgive me, but even if you were never trained, wouldn't just the basic understanding of right and wrong suggest to you that if a person does not live at the home they cannot register there?" District judge Fernando Macias replied.

The state suggested that the judge give Gomez a suspended sentence with 18 months of probation.

Instead, he sentenced her to three years of probation.

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