Third Maverick County commissioner indicted for bribery

Cesar Flores arrested on five counts of receiving bribes

The Maverick County Press documents the indictment of Commissioner Cesar Flores.
The Maverick County Press documents the indictment of Commissioner Cesar Flores.

It's the latest in an alleged South Texas ring of corruption - a third Maverick County Commissioner indicted on bribery charges.

On Thursday, Cesar Flores was arrested on five counts of receiving bribes.

The indictment alleges Flores manipulated the bidding process, making sure certain contractors would secure county jobs that would pay him kickbacks.

"It's a shameful situation," said Roberto Ruiz, Maverick County Treasurer. "As a public official and a citizen, of course it hurts."

However, Flores is not the first commissioner in Maverick County to be in trouble with the law.

Two others have already been indicted.

Commissioner Eilaz Maldonado was arrested last month on wire fraud and bribery and in October, Commissioner Rodolfo Heredia was indicted on conspiracy charges.

Heredia is still in custody, but Maldonado bonded out and is still serving as commissioner.

"I know that the situation has changed somewhat because of actions taken today," said Maverick County Judge David Saucedo. "But, I also have to follow the rules and the rules state that these gentlemen are innocent until proven guilty. So, they are to continue to serve as county commissioners."

Thursday's arrest means there is one commissioner left who has not been indicted, but county officials said Thursday that they still have to continue to conduct business.

Maverick County Sheriff Tom Schmerber said for him, his focus is keeping the county safe.

"We have a lot of good people here," said Schmerber. "We have people willing to serve the county."

As of Thursday night, Flores was out on a $40,000 bond, but for now, he will remain on the board, along with the other two commissioners.

The county attorney is filing petitions to remove all of them as commissioners.

For a list of recent stories Stephanie Serna has done, click here.