Attorney General Ken Paxton today announced that his office will prosecute a non-U.S. citizen who was indicted by a Montgomery County grand jury on two counts of election fraud related to the November 2016 presidential election in Harris County.
Laura Janeth Garza, a Mexican national, is charged with voter impersonation and ineligible voting, both second-degree felonies. If convicted, she faces two to 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
A joint investigation by Attorney General Paxton’s office and the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) determined that Garza obtained documents to steal the identity of a U.S. citizen and illegally register to vote in Harris County. She cast ballots in 2004, 2012 and 2016.
“This case demonstrates my office’s commitment to protecting the integrity of elections,” Attorney General Paxton said. “We will continue to do everything in our power to safeguard the electoral process in Texas.”
Attorney General Paxton’s office is working with DPS on the investigation and prosecution of the charges. Garza’s case came to light when a citizen attempted to obtain a U.S. Passport, only to discover that Garza had already done so using the woman’s identity. As a result, the U.S. State Department referred Garza’s case to the Criminal Investigations Division of DPS, which ultimately handed it over to the Office of the Attorney General for an election fraud investigation.