5th Person Pleads Guilty in Vegas HOA Fraud Probe

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- A former Las Vegas construction company aide has become the fifth person to take a plea deal in a federal investigation of condominium homeowner associations steering business to favored attorneys and businesses.

Federal prosecutors say 24-year-old Angela Esparza pleaded guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. She agreed to testify for the prosecution in return for possible leniency at sentencing.

She'll face up to 30 years in prison at sentencing Jan. 23.

Esparza's lawyer, Jonathan Powell, didn't immediately respond to a message.

Esparza worked for the HOA management firm Platinum Community Services.

She admitted in federal court that she helped rig homeowners association elections to pack HOA boards with candidates controlled by co-conspirators.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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