Athens Review, Athens, Texas

March 17, 2014

San Antonio lawyer admits bribing judge

Associated Press
Palestine Herald Press

SAN ANTONIO — A San Antonio lawyer pleaded guilty Monday to bribing a state district judge in exchange for favorable rulings.

Alberto Acevedo Jr. appeared in court, and admitted that he was caught because of an FBI investigation into suspected corruption at the Bexar County courthouse. He pleaded guilty to bribery involving a program receiving federal funds.

Federal prosecutors said in court documents that Acevedo bribed Judge Angus McGinty, who resigned in February. Acevedo gave gifts and payments totaling more than $6,600 to McGinty last year in order to secure rulings favoring Acevedo's clients, the documents state. Acevedo also promised to take care of car repairs the judge needed.

"Fair and impartial judgment by those entrusted to carry out the laws is the bedrock of our legal system," Acting U.S. Attorney Steven C. Yarbrough said in a news release. "We cannot and will not allow the public's faith in our legal system to be shaken by judicial corruption."

The release states that the judge provided the favorable judicial rulings requested by Acevedo, including lenient sentences and less restrictive conditions of release for Acevedo's clients.

McGinty, who has not been charged, withdrew from the Republican primary race for the 144th district seat too late to be taken off the ballot and garnered about a quarter of votes cast, finishing third in unofficial election results.

Acevedo is scheduled to be sentenced in June and faces a maximum 10-year sentence and $250,000 fine. He was released on bond pending his sentencing.