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34 more face voter fraud charges in Hennepin County

  • Article by: ROCHELLE OLSON
  • Star Tribune
  • October 26, 2010 - 11:47 PM

Thirty-four more people will be charged with voter fraud in Hennepin County in the 2008 election, County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Tuesday, bringing the total cases of alleged abuse to 47 for that election year.

Freeman's office announced the decision a week after the county sheriff announced voting-related charges against seven people, most of whom are accused of registering to vote while ineligible.

Dan McGrath, executive director of Minnesota Majority, a group dedicated to traditional values, said the organization forwarded 450 names of felons who voted. Freeman's investigation determined that 47 of them should be charged.

McGrath is pleased with the progress but said "we still think there's more to it."

All of the alleged fraudulent voting occurred in Hennepin County, which had 665,000 ballots cast in 2008.

The rate of alleged fraud amounted to about 0.00006 percent of ballots case, Freeman said.

"There was no evidence of any organized effort to enable or promote this activity," he said.

Of the 47 cases, 43 are alleged to be felons who voted and four are cases in which people voted twice. Santo Cruz, spokesman for the county attorney's office, said no more charges will be filed from the 2008 election.

Criminal complaints for the cases weren't immediately available. Freeman notified the County Board of his decision Tuesday afternoon in a letter.

Prospective voters were required to sign a voter registration card before or during the Nov. 4, 2008, election, indicating they had the right to vote because they had not been convicted of a felony or had been discharged from their sentence.

If convicted, felons would likely get an extension of their probation for the fraudulent voting, the prosecutor said.

Rochelle Olson • 612-673-1747

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