Nogales mayor arrested on multiple charges, including bribery

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Octavio Garcia Suarez was booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail Tuesday, September 28, 2010. By Bryce Potter Octavio Garcia Suarez was booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail Tuesday, September 28, 2010. By Bryce Potter
Octavio Von Borstel, left.  Octavio Garcia-Suarez, right. By Bryce Potter Octavio Von Borstel, left. Octavio Garcia-Suarez, right. By Bryce Potter
Octavio Von Borstel By Bryce Potter Octavio Von Borstel By Bryce Potter
Nogales City Manager Shane Dille during a press conference Tuesday. By Bryce Potter Nogales City Manager Shane Dille during a press conference Tuesday. By Bryce Potter

TUCSON, Ariz. -- Octavio Garcia Von Borstel, 29, the Mayor of Nogales, Arizona, has been indicted on multiple charges and was arrested Tuesday morning at his City Hall office.

The Arizona Attorney General's office says the mayor's father, Octavio Suarez Garcia, 59, was arrested as well.

The mayor is facing charges of bribery, theft, fraud and money laundering.  His father was indicated for fraud, theft and money laundering.

Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard said in a news release, "These charges are serious violations of the law.  Because some charges involve the official actions of an elected official, they violate the public trust."

Federal agents were also involved in the investigation and arrest.  "When a public official allegedly commits criminal acts it erodes the public's trust," said the FBI Special Agent in Arizona, Nathan Gray.  "The FBI and our law enforcement partners are determined to address public corruption at all levels of government."

Shane Dilles, the Nogales City manager, held a news conference Tuesday afternoon and told reporters he was "shocked and surprised" by the arrest.  He said he talked with the Mayor at about 8 a.m. Tuesday and everything seemed fine.  He said he heard some commotion around 9 a.m. and saw FBI agents taking Von Borstel out of his office in handcuffs.

Dilles said as of right now Von Borstel is still officially mayor.  He said Vice Mayor Olga Valdez will meet with him tomorrow to discuss Von Borstel's status. 

Von Borstel became Mayor of Nogales in April, 2008.  There have been numerous reports of a criminal investigation for months.

The FBI says it began investigating the mayor five months ago.  It learned he was soliciting Nogales businesses to hire him as a business consultant.  At least one business admitted to the FBI it was paying the mayor to get it city contracts and business. 

The Arizona Attorney General's office says the mayor's father was involved through his Nogales business, ACE Cash Express.  They allege the father laundered up to $3.2 million in money orders.