School architect guilty of bribery

Sept. 17, 2007
Bribery scheme in Texas allegedly funneled cash to school board member

Architect Jose “Joe” Lopez has pleaded guilty to federal charges related to a bribery scheme that allegedly involved Pharr-San Juan-Alamo (Texas) school board member Rogelio “Roy” Rodriguez. Lopez, who oversaw numerous construction projects within the Pharr-San Juan-Alamo district when he was the district’s architect of record, admitted to extortion involving a $15,000 payment to Rodriguez. Contractor Pedro Armando Gutierrez pleaded guilty last month to a conspiracy count involving payments made to Rodriguez in connection with contracts that went to Gutierrez’s masonry company. The indictment against Lopez said that from 1997 to 2004, Lopez and Gutierrez supplied Rodriguez with $65,000 in cash in exchange for favorable votes and influence on design and construction contracts.

Click here to read The McAllen Monitor article.

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