SUNLAND PARK, N.M. (AP) — Two officials of a New Mexico border town wracked by allegations of extortion and voting fraud were arrested Monday.
Former Sunland Park city councilor Angelica Marquez and the city's public information officer, Armando Alba, were charged with extortion and conspiracy to commit extortion, according to KVIA-TV in El Paso, Texas. The details of the allegations were not immediately available.
Including the latest arrests, seven people have been taken into custody on a variety of charges since allegations surfaced a few weeks ago that then mayor-pro tem and now Mayor-elect Daniel Salinas and other city officials tried to force Gerardo Hernandez out of the mayoral race with the recorded video of him getting a topless lap dance.
Since then, officials have also alleged widespread voter fraud.
Marquez was arrested at her home. Alba was arrested at his city hall office. Both were taken to Dona Ana County Detention Center, where they being held on $50,000 secure bond each. It was unclear if they had retained attorneys.
Salinas City Manager Jaime Aguilera were indicted last week on extortion and other charges related to the alleged blackmail plot. Through their attorney, Bradley Sims, Salinas and Aguilera both have denied the charges.
A temporary city worker was also charged in the plot, and Marquez and two other current or former city officials have been arrested on voting fraud charges.
Salinas won the election last week but was not expected to be sworn in with other winners on Monday night, as he has been barred by terms of his release from entering city hall or having any contact with city workers.