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Major Obama Donors Tied to Fugitive Who Fled to Mexico
The New York Times ^ | Monday, February 6, 2012 | Mike McIntire

Posted on 02/06/2012 5:37:02 PM PST by kristinn

Two American brothers of a Mexican casino magnate who fled drug and fraud charges in the United States and has been seeking a pardon enabling him to return have emerged as major fund-raisers and donors for President Obama’s re-election campaign.

The casino owner, Juan Jose Rojas Cardona, known as Pepe, jumped bail in Iowa in 1994 and disappeared, and has since been linked to violence and corruption in Mexico. A State Department cable in 2009 said he was suspected of orchestrating the assassination of a business rival and making illegal campaign donations to Mexican officials.

When The New York Times asked the Obama campaign early Monday about the Cardonas, officials said they were unaware of the brother in Mexico. Later in the day, the campaign said it was refunding the money raised by the family, which totaled more than $200,000.

SNIP

Although the two brothers live and work in Chicago, they maintain ties to Pepe Cardona in Mexico. Alberto Cardona operates an advertising agency in Mexico that has worked for political candidates backed by his brother, according to public records and Mexican news reports. Public records also show that the domain name for the Web site of a restaurant Pepe Cardona owns is registered to Alberto Cardona.

Obama campaign officials said most of the money raised by the Cardona brothers came from themselves and other relatives, donations of about $200,000. In addition, the campaign was identifying other donations, believed to total less than $100,000, that was bundled from other people.

SNIP

Pepe Cardona is one of the largest players in Mexico’s violent and tumultuous casino trade. SNIP The State Department cable, which was part of the cache made public by WikiLeaks, said that he was suspected of illegally funneling $5 million into Mexican political campaigns in 2006.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS:
KEYWORDS: 40west; albertocardona; benlabolt; cardona; carloscardona; carlosrojascardona; dnc; dnc4criminals; dncrico; duplicate; election; election2012; fastandfurious; gunrunner; gunwalker; labolt; leticiacardona; leticiarojascardona; manuelsanchez; obama; obama4criminals; pepecardona; sanchez; tangolatin; tangomedia

1 posted on 02/06/2012 5:37:08 PM PST by kristinn
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To: kristinn
imagine that violence and corruption...
2 posted on 02/06/2012 5:45:56 PM PST by ptsal (E)
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To: kristinn
do I really have to say it???

3 posted on 02/06/2012 5:46:19 PM PST by Chode (American Hedonist - *DTOM* -ww- NO Pity for the LAZY)
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To: kristinn

Why is this in the NYT


4 posted on 02/06/2012 6:08:20 PM PST by uncbob
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To: kristinn

bttt


5 posted on 02/06/2012 6:13:38 PM PST by Liberty Valance (Keep a simple manner for a happy life :o)
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To: uncbob

Beat me to it


6 posted on 02/06/2012 6:14:09 PM PST by italianquaker ( Mr Obama inherited an AAA rating and made it AA, thnx Resident Zero)
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To: kristinn

How is this NOT taking foreign money for a political campaign??? Are these brothers Naturalized Americans?

This reeks!!!


7 posted on 02/06/2012 6:22:57 PM PST by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: kristinn

In Mexico, bribery is just a part of doing business. Always has been.

In the US... no, wait.

Never mind.


8 posted on 02/06/2012 6:35:10 PM PST by glock rocks (I didn't leave the Republican party, it left me.)
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To: Danae

“Are these brothers Naturalized Americans?”

I meant to say DONORS not brothers~!!!


9 posted on 02/06/2012 6:37:35 PM PST by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: kristinn
Obama and his campaign has so many ties to criminals and corruption that one almost becomes numb to any new stories like this. It is like the expression...”So, what else is new?” when it comes to Obama’s sleazy, crime ridden connections as well as those of his cabinet members and appointees. Obviously, with all the cover-ups and avoidance of the truths like this about the current "#Occupier" in the WH, the tentacles of corruption stretch far and fast throughout the media.
10 posted on 02/06/2012 6:43:18 PM PST by CitizenM (Obama's legacy will be to be remembered as The architect of the decline of the USA)
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To: kristinn

bump


11 posted on 02/06/2012 6:52:25 PM PST by tutstar (Want pings to Aaron Klein articles and OWS nonsense?)
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To: uncbob

They gave the money back.

For Democrats, that means the debate is over.

This is the last we’ll hear of it from the Times.


12 posted on 02/06/2012 7:32:00 PM PST by digger48
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To: kristinn

The republicans don’t have anyone with strong enough criminal background to compete with Obama this election.


13 posted on 02/06/2012 7:55:09 PM PST by Rebelbase
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To: CitizenM

“......with all the cover-ups.....”

Yep. When it comes to Obama and his “transparent” ad-
ministration we can only wonder what kind of crimes
and mischief the MSM is sitting on. Will it be dribbled
out if he is re-elected? Will it be held until after
a second term? Will we have to hear about it thru the
tabloids? Or will we be treated to rumors?


14 posted on 02/06/2012 7:56:25 PM PST by Sivad (NorCal Red Turf)
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To: Rebelbase

I can see another “Marc Rich” pardon in our future!!


15 posted on 02/06/2012 8:05:28 PM PST by Segovia
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To: kristinn
He was sentenced to five years in prison, and while free pending an appeal, he was arrested in New Mexico on charges of trying to smuggle marijuana across the border, court records show. He pleaded guilty to federal drug charges in 1994, but disappeared while out on bail, later surfacing in Mexico.

In 1998, federal prosecutors obtained approval from a judge to quash the drug indictment, wiping clean Pepe Cardona’s federal court record.

Surprised to see this in the NYSlime (and it isn't even Friday).

The italics above are the "money quote" for me. I wonder how he got a pardon in 1998? Who the hell was in charge back then???

16 posted on 02/06/2012 8:56:26 PM PST by mcenedo (lying liberal media - our most dangerous and powerful enemy)
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To: kristinn

Pepe might have needed a few guns


17 posted on 02/06/2012 8:57:37 PM PST by woofie (It takes three villages and a forest of woodland creatures to raise a child in Obamaville)
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To: mcenedo
Who the hell was in charge back then???

If I'm not mistaken, Cardona was the name of the drug dealer who was also a big Clinton donor and had his picture taken with Bill & Hillary in front of the White House Xmas tree.

18 posted on 02/06/2012 9:06:58 PM PST by okie01 (THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA: Ignorance On Parade)
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To: okie01

I’m shocked!!


19 posted on 02/06/2012 9:26:14 PM PST by mcenedo (lying liberal media - our most dangerous and powerful enemy)
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To: kristinn

The next “Drudge Report” could be built if somebody could find a substantial link between these Chicago guys and the folks getting the guns from Fast and Furious. Many of us have wondered if a case could be made that Holder wanted the guns over the border for some other reason than attempting to sandbag the 2nd Amendment.


20 posted on 02/06/2012 11:41:22 PM PST by the_Watchman
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To: the_Watchman; kristinn
interesting back story:

Fall from Grace
21 posted on 02/07/2012 12:38:50 AM PST by Tainan (Cogito, ergo conservatus sum)
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To: okie01
If I'm not mistaken, Cardona was the name of the drug dealer who was also a big Clinton donor and had his picture taken with Bill & Hillary in front of the White House Xmas tree.

There were so many:

http://gopcapitalist.tripod.com/hillary-dealer.jpg

22 posted on 02/07/2012 4:14:43 AM PST by Does so ("What elephant?")
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; ColdOne; Convert from ECUSA; ...

thanks kristinn, additional locked topic:
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/2843227/posts


23 posted on 02/07/2012 4:43:50 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: glock rocks

In Chicago, bribery is just a part of doing business. Always has been.


24 posted on 02/07/2012 5:56:34 AM PST by kinsman redeemer (The real enemy seeks to devour what is good.)
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To: kristinn; hoosiermama; STARWISE; LucyT; kcvl; MestaMachine; Nachum
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/07/us/politics/major-obama-donors-are-tied-to-pepe-cardona-mexican-fugitive.html?_r=1

As recently as January of last year, one of Mr. Cardona’s brothers in Chicago, Carlos Rojas Cardona, arranged for the former chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party to seek a pardon from the governor for Pepe Cardona, according to prosecutors in that state. None was forthcoming.

Last fall, Carlos Cardona and another brother in Chicago, Alberto Rojas Cardona, began raising money for the Obama campaign and the Democratic National Committee. The Cardona brothers, who have no prior history of political giving, appeared seemingly out of nowhere in the world of Democratic fund-raising, Democratic activists said.

Although the two brothers live and work in Chicago, they maintain ties to Pepe Cardona in Mexico. Alberto Cardona operates an advertising agency in Mexico that has worked for political candidates backed by his brother, according to public records and Mexican news reports. Public records also show that the domain name for the Web site of a restaurant Pepe Cardona owns is registered to Alberto Cardona.

Obama campaign officials said most of the money raised by the Cardona brothers came from themselves and other relatives, donations of about $200,000. In addition, the campaign was identifying other donations, believed to total less than $100,000, that was bundled from other people.

(snip)

Whatever the family’s motivation, the president cannot pardon someone for state crimes. On Monday, Democratic fund-raisers who have had encounters with Alberto and Carlos Cardona expressed surprise upon learning about their family history. Manuel Sanchez, a Chicago lawyer who is deeply involved in Latino outreach for the Obama administration, said he first met them in December at a finance committee meeting for the president’s campaign in Washington.

(snip)

One of them, a long exposé in September by a Mexican magazine, Proceso, chronicled Pepe Cardona’s relatively swift rise to fortune and notoriety in Mexico after fleeing the American authorities. He obtained Mexican gambling licenses, and with help from investors in Louisiana, he started opening casinos in and around Monterrey, eventually becoming known as Mexico's “casino czar.”

The article reported that Tango Media, an advertising company it said is owned by Alberto Cardona, worked on the campaigns of politicians favored by Pepe Cardona in communities where he owned casinos. It also said Carlos Cardona was involved in one of Pepe Cardona’s business deals.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

http://thegazette.com/2011/10/16/fall-from-grace/

Casinos connected to drugs, politicians

Gambling has boomed in Mexico in recent years.

Proceso has reported that the number of gambling enterprises went from 123 in 2000 to at least 790 in 2011. An estimated 12,000 people work in the industry.

Monterrey, the third-largest metro area in Mexico, has been the scene of escalating violence from rival drug cartels. Gunmen entered the city’s Casino Royale on Aug. 25, setting a fire that trapped patrons and killed more than 50 people.

“I follow the cartels, and they are extremely active in the casinos,” said George Grayson, a government professor at Virginia’s College of William & Mary. “The corruption in that segment of the economy is ubiquitous.”

Rojas-Cardona was in the middle of this web, according to the 2009 diplomatic cable released on WikiLeaks.

“A source familiar with casino operations in the area reported Ibarra was arrested after returning from a meeting with Juan Jose (‘Pepe’) Rojas Cardona, who is widely believed to have orchestrated Rogelio Garza (Cantu)’s assassination,” according to the cable.

Cantu, murdered in June 2009, was known as the “El Diablo” and “Czar of Strip Clubs” and owned a large casino and several strip clubs in the Monterrey area, the cable states.

“Since casino licenses are assigned by the federal government to specific individuals, Rodrigo (sic) Garza’s casino will no longer be able to operate, thus allowing the Rojas brothers to consolidate control of casinos in the Monterrey region,” the cable states.

The Rojas-Cardona brothers had close ties to the Beltran-Leyva drug cartel and to politicians in the National Action Party, according to the cable. Sources told the U.S. Consulate that the brothers illegally donated $5 million to two politicians and gave a helicopter and free advertising to a political candidate.

http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/11/22/2514751_p3/corruption-in-mexico-casinos-takes.html

Rojas-Cardona signed a plea agreement on the felony trafficking charge in June of that year, but by September he'd skipped bail and vanished.

In late 1998, federal prosecutors asked a judge to quash the arrest warrant and lift the indictment, a practice that sometimes indicates a defendant has become a federal informant.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

http://www.opensecrets.org/indivs/search.php?name=rojas+cardona&state=&zip=&employ=&cand=&c2012=Y&c2010=Y&c2008=Y&sort=N&capcode=gz2sn&submit=Submit+your+Donor+Query

Rojas Cardona, Alberto
Chicago,IL 60611 Information Requested 10/28/11 $30,800 DNC Services Corp (D)
Rojas Cardona, Alberto
Chicago,IL 60611 Tango Latin, Inc 10/28/11 $2,500 Obama, Barack (D)
Rojas Cardona, Alberto
Chicago,IL 60611 Tango Latin, Inc 10/28/11 $2,500 Obama, Barack (D)
Rojas Cardona, Leticia
Brentwood,TN 37027 Self-Employed 12/2/11 $2,500 Obama, Barack (D)
Rojas Cardona, Leticia
Brentwood,TN 37027 Self-Employed 12/2/11 $2,500 Obama, Barack (D)
Rojas Cardona, V Carlos
Chicago,IL 60601 Tango Productions 12/1/11 $2,500 Obama, Barack (D)
Rojas Cardona, V Carlos
Chicago,IL 60601 Tango Productions 12/1/11 $2,500 Obama, Barack (D)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

http://www.law.com/jsp/nlj/PubArticlePrinterFriendlyNLJ.jsp?id=1202425831872&slreturn=1

Obama’s Chicago friends take a shot at predicting the president-elect's priorities

Lynne Marek / Staff reporterContactAll Articles

The National Law Journal

November 6, 2008

Chicago lawyers who have been longtime friends and supporters of President-Elect Barack Obama expect his legislative priorities will focus on healthcare, immigration and education. Obama is likely to push hard during his first year in office for “comprehensive immigration reform” that will let some 12 million undocumented residents stay in the U.S., said Manny Sanchez, who raised $10 million from the Hispanic business community for his friend's campaign.

(snip)

(no link)

Hispanics flex political power - Dem candidates woo growing demographic
Chicago Sun-Times (IL) - Sunday, September 2, 2007
Author: Jennifer Hunter, The Chicago Sun-Times

EXCERPT

Loquacious lawyer Manny Sanchez has photos of the famous scattered throughout his office, propped up against the window sill, nailed onto the wall, sitting on his bookshelf — actor John Malkovich, quarterback Joe Montana, Hillary and Bill, and, in a central spot, one of Barack Obama , with Sanchez and his wife, Pat Pulido Sanchez.

Obama is lucky to have Sanchez, 59, as one of his local Hispanic champions. Not only does Sanchez know everyone, he is a superlative fund-raiser and schmoozer, with a network nonpareil. And he has been assembling a nationwide “kitchen Cabinet” of high-profile Hispanics to advise Obama .

Sanchez sensed early that Obama was going places. “I have been a Barack Obama supporter since he first campaigned against Bobby Rush,” he explains during an interview in his office. “If you get in on the ground floor, you might be remembered.”

Sanchez says Obama is “not a traditional Democrat, a member of the Democratic elite. He is an outsider like us, and he brings the potential for a new kind of leadership.”

http://www.sanchezdh.com/announcements/president-obama-gives-founding-partner-a-shout-out

05-Oct-2011
President Obama Gives Founding Partner a Shout-out

President Obama gave Founding Partner, Manny Sanchez and wife Pat a shout-out at the Cinco de Mayo White House Reception. Click on the following link to see video of the Cinco de Mayo event. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHE96OcQHgU

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/05/26/president-obama-announces-members-presidents-advisory-commission-educati

President Obama Announces Members of the President's Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanics

http://southchicagoan.blogspot.com/2011/10/seeking-latino-money-to-bolster-obama.html

People with ties to the entertainment industry, or those in other professions who want to be able to say they checked out some Hollywood glamour, will show up for a party at the home of actors Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas.

AMONG THOSE WHO were supposed to show up was actor Eva Longoria and television hostess Giselle Fernandez, along with Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and various attorneys from around the country who head powerful law firms.

Including one attorney from Obama’s adopted hometown of Chicago – Manny Sanchez, who founded the law firm of Sanchez, Daniels & Hoffman, LLP.

25 posted on 02/07/2012 6:23:13 AM PST by maggief
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To: maggief; Jim Robinson; TheOldLady; MinuteGal; Mountain Mary

Looks to me that you’ve found the missing link.

Was over at the Chicago crime thread. At the beginning the comments were general, who’s who. Then we got in more details or who was connected to whom. Side tracked a bit with BlankO fiasco.

BUT

This is red meat. Just WOW. Freeper Researching at it’s very best!!


26 posted on 02/07/2012 6:49:46 AM PST by hoosiermama (Stand with God and Sarah and Newt will be standing next to you.)
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To: hoosiermama

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2012/02/07/us/politics/major-obama-donors-are-tied-to-pepe-cardona-mexican-fugitive.xml;.w6?rec=t

The last such request came in the final days of the term of Gov. Chet Culver, a Democrat, and was filed by Gordon Fischer, a lawyer who is a former chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party. In his pardon application, Mr. Fischer explained that he knew Pepe Cardona from his days at the University of Iowa. Mr. Fischer declined to comment on Monday, citing attorney-client privilege.

http://bradshawlaw.com/attorneys/detail.cfm?id=49

Gordon R. Fischer

...

Iowa Democratic Party
• Chair, 2002-2004


27 posted on 02/07/2012 7:16:31 AM PST by maggief
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To: maggief

Wow...


28 posted on 02/07/2012 7:40:36 AM PST by kcvl
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To: maggief

in 2011, Carlos and another Chicago-based brother, Alberto Rojas Cardona, started fundraising for the Obama re-election campaign, despite not having any apparent history of political involvement.

The two Chicago brothers each gave the maximum $30,800 to the Democratic National Committee, their Tennessee-based sister Leticia Rojas Cardona donated $13,000 to the national committee and another relative living in Illinois gave $12,600, The Times reported, citing records. All up, more than $200,000 was raised by the family.

http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/politics/2012/02/07/obama-campaign-to-refund-donations-from-brothers-mexican-fugitive/#ixzz1li6P1Ygg

Carlos and Alberto Cardona could not be contacted, but Sarah Westall of Minnesota — the wife of another Cardona brother, Gabriel — told the newspaper that the family raised funds for Obama because they wanted to help the Latino community.

“I understand that it looks real bad,” she said. “But the rest of the family are really good people. Pepe is actually a good person too.”

US diplomatic cables, released by WikiLeaks in 2009, said Pepe Cardona was believed to have illegally delivered $5 million to Mexican politicians in 2006 and organized the assassination of a business rival.


29 posted on 02/07/2012 7:43:45 AM PST by kcvl
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To: kcvl

http://www.bizjournals.com/twincities/stories/2008/11/24/story11.html

Brickwell borrowers file Chap. 11

...

Co-debtors: Sarah Westall, Gabriel Rojas-Cardonas

http://igh.cornerkicksystems.com/page/show/6589-board-member-information

(Youth Soccer)

Gabriel Rojas

Treasurer


30 posted on 02/07/2012 8:01:29 AM PST by maggief
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To: kristinn

I sure hope Rush talks about this today.


31 posted on 02/07/2012 9:43:58 AM PST by Arrowhead1952 (Dear God, thanks for the rain, but please let it rain more in Texas. Amen.)
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