Hoboken man who pleaded guilty to 2015 VBM fraud scheme gets 1 year probation

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A Hoboken man who pleaded guilty to a vote-by-mail fraud scheme related to the 2015 municipal elections was sentenced to one year of probation yesterday, federal court filings show.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

William Rojas, 70, of Hoboken, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge William J. Martini during a 30-minute hearing yesterday, court documents show.

He was represented by Kevin Carlucci, a Newark-based public defender.

Rojas was charged with a violation of the federal Travel Act for causing the mails to be used in aid of voter bribery contrary to New Jersey state law back in January 2019 and pleaded guilty in October of the same year.

He was the fourth person from Hoboken to be charged for VBM fraud and the second to be charged in connection to the 2015 ward city council races.

The other was Matt Calicchio, who pleaded guilty to similar charges pertaining to both the 2013 and 2015 municipal elections, a key witness in the trial of Frank Raia – who was ultimately convicted of VBM fraud.

Calicchio’s criminal complaint says that two candidates benefitted from Raia’s alleged VBM scheme in 2015: candidate 1 was said to have Calicchio and Rojas working for them, while candidate 2 is only described as the chair of their own election committee.

During court room testimony, Calicchio claimed the candidate he worked for was Eduardo Gonzalez, who unsuccessfully challenged Peter Cunningham for the 5th Ward council seat.

No Hoboken council candidates on the ballot in 2015, including Gonzalez, have been charged by the U.S. Attorney’s Office as of this writing.

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