Uresti says he will appeal 12-year sentence for fraud and money laundering

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Carlos Uresti
(AP Photo/Eric Gay)

Senior U.S. District Judge David Ezra in San Antonio this week sentenced former state Sen. Carlos Uresti to 12 years in prison for his role in a fraud and money laundering scheme.

Ezra also ordered Uresti, who resigned from the Texas Senate nine days ago, to pay $6.3 million in restitution to the victims of FourWinds Logistics, an oil field services company for which Uresti served as general counsel.

The judge allowed Uresti to remain free on bond as he awaits trial later this year on a bribery charge related to the investment scheme, the San Antonio Express News reported late Tuesday.

Uresti was contrite as Ezra sentenced him but later told reporters he intends to appeal a sentence he doesn’t believe was fair. “I don’t believe so. My family doesn’t believe so and my legal team doesn’t believe that 12 years is just and fair,” the Express News reported.

“There’s no one to blame but me,” Uresti said before the sentencing. “All my life I had direction and purpose. I lost that direction and purpose. Instead, I followed opportunity. I truly feel remorseful, ashamed, disappointed, disgraced, angry at myself and sad.”

Ezra told Uresti he “engaged in a selfish, destructive course of conduct that he knew, without a doubt, was illegal. There is no one in this great country of ours who stands above the law, A substantial sentence is warranted.”

“I think the sentence today is ridiculous, with all due respect to the judge,”  Mike McCrum, Uresti’s attorney, told reporters, whom he said might be ignorant of the work Uresti did in his more than 21 years representing San Antonio in the Texas House and Senate.

That work will be carried on by one of the eight candidates running in a July 31 special election called for by Gov. Greg Abbott last week to complete Uresti’s term in office, which runs through? January 2021.

The candidates include Democrats Tomas Uresti, the former senator’s brother, who lost his bid for another term in the Texas House in March; state Rep. Roland Gutierrez, of San Antonio; former U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego of Alpine; and Charlie Urbina Jones, an attorney from Poteet.

Republicans include Pete Flores, beaten by Carlos Uresti in the 2016 general election; Carlos Antonio Raymond, who failed to get the Republican nomination for House District 117 in March; and Jesse Alaniz, former president of the Harlandale Independent School District board.

Tony Valdivia, a senior reporting analyst at USAA Bank, is running as a Libertarian.

Uresti announced his resignation in a letter he posted on his Facebook and Twitter accounts, putting to rest the question of whether he would exercise his legal right to serve in the Senate while appealing his conviction.

A federal jury in February convicted Uresti on 11 counts of money laundering and wire and securities fraud. Uresti owned a one percent share of FourWinds Logistics, as well as representing the company in what court documents called a Ponzi scheme for investors.

The case centered on Uresti’s business relationship with Denise Cantu, his mistress and victim, whose $900,000 investment was almost entirely wiped out. Cantu was not present for Uresti’s sentencing.

A few months before his conviction, Uresti had been called a serial sexual abuser by several women who dealt with him during his career in the legislature.

Mark Lisheron can be reached at [email protected].

57 COMMENTS

  1. Uresti was the soley responsible person for a RICO-like conspiracy at City Hall. He discovered that someone at the city communication office was embezzling from the AVAYA fund. I was fired by my boss for not taking it seriously because if I had caught the stealing corruption the city wouldn’t be out $2M. They blamed me and my wife Susan. Uresti ruined my life.

    Susan and I celebrate his conviction and the sentence. Susan is celebrating from a hospital bed because of the emotional breakdown mental drama she suffered from because of all this and the surgery to her face.

    Uresti and his cronies (Ted Cruz, Pastor John Hager, the CEO of SAS Shoes, and the archbishop) are stalking me online and they send Susan and me defaming letters to my wife’s workplace at Whataburger. Susan and I are moving out of San Antonio because of it. We are moving to Colorado where Susan can smoke medicinal canabis for the pain in her face.

    Uresti needs to apologize to all of San Antonio but that pervert owes it one to me most of all.

  2. I would like to suggest we all follow this tale and see how much time this abuser of public trust actually spends behind bars. I don’t think it will be years .But we will never know because there will be some new shine object that will be waved before us and off we go to follow that.

  3. We will work with US Attorney Bash and judges to show how Uresti has for several years helped DA LaHood , SAPD Chief McManus , Judge Antonia Arteaga and other city / county officials conceal 4 years of illegal meetings, theft of public funds, “cooked” books, perjury in the 57th district and Federal court by the city, retaliation, official oppression, grant fraud and other crimes…..I filed case # SAPD 18117731 naming Councilman Manuel Pelaez for stalking, cyber-bullying, threatening and defaming us while inferring that we have mental health issues for reporting corruption…The liberal media , Mayor Nirenberg and the Council remain silent to protect the guilty……see the LaHood files at http://www.castrogate.com and …https://texasmonitor.org/san-antonio-councilman-uses-facebook-mock-activist-couple/…

    • A Police Report was filed stating – “I fear for my safety and fear entering Police Headquarters to fill out these forms”……Police report # SAPD 18117731 is on file naming San Antonio TX Democrat Mexican Councilman Manuel Pelaez for cyber-stalking, cyber-bullying, threatening, frightening and harassing ME since March 5 to silence MY reports of corruption …https://texasmonitor.org/san-antonio-councilman-uses-facebook-mock-activist-couple/…

    • I did not post the above comment you see there. It is the work of an Uresti fraudster impersonating my wife, Susan. She is recovering from surgery to her face and she has to rest. Someone thinks it is funny to make an ill woman my wife suffer dur Ng her recovering period? This is why Uresti needs to go to jail! I ask Manny Palaze and Greg Brockhouse and Chief McManus to join with the FBI and put this impersonating game to an end or I will send each of them at least SIX certified letters detailing the specific details of the crimes committed.

    • Also don’t forget that you can call the FBI hotline at ‭(210) 824-3502‬ and report Sheryl Skully, Uresti, Joaquin Castro, Diego Bernal, Greg Brockhouse, Rick Perry, and the Catholic Church about all their crimes in this RICO-like conspiracy.

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