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Puerto Rico ex-mayor pleads guilty in kickback scheme

April 8, 2022 GMT

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A former Puerto Rico mayor pleaded guilty Friday in federal court to accepting bribes in exchange for awarding contracts and approving invoice payments.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Eduardo Cintrón Suárez, who has been mayor of the southern coastal town of Guayama since 2013, could face a maximum of five years in prison. A sentencing date has not been set yet.

He was accused of participating in a kickback scheme for eight years in which he awarded asphalt and paving contracts and approved payments to an unidentified company in exchange for receiving $1 for every square meter of asphalt laid.

Cintrón is a member of the Popular Democratic Party, whose president on Friday demanded that he resign. Cintrón did so, saying he committed a grave error and asked for forgiveness.