Nieto pleads guilty

ALPINE, PRESIDIO, PRESIDIO COUNTY - Carlos Eduardo Nieto, 66, the former Special Projects Coordinator for the City of Presidio and former Presidio Independent School District trustee, entered a guilty plea to federal charges related to a public corruption investigation at the Alpine federal magistrate court in Alpine on Tuesday.

Appearing before U.S. District Judge David Counts, Nieto pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud and deprivation of honest services, according to a news release from the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Texas.

By pleading guilty, Nieto admitted that he and 56-year-old former Presidio County Precinct 3 Commissioner Lorenzo Padilla Hernandez conspired since May 10, 2016, to defraud Presidio County and its citizens of money by corruptly ensuring, through their positions and

influence, that a particular company would be awarded a county contract for a document management system.

Hernandez and Nieto solicited and received $19,800 and $8,300, respectively, for their efforts.

On May 9, 2017, Hernandez voted to award the contract to that particular company.

On August 3, 2018, Hernandez pleaded guilty to the same charge.

Nieto faces up to 20 years in federal prison. Judge Counts scheduled sentencing for Nieto on February 19, 2019, in Pecos. Sentencing for Hernandez, who also faces up to 20 years in federal prison, has yet to be scheduled.

The FBI, with assistance from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigations Division investigated this case.