Former Starr County attorney arrested on public corruption charges
The former county attorney for Starr County was arrested on public corruption charges, the U.S. Attorney General’s Office announced Friday.
Victor Canales, 49, is facing charges of federal theft, extortion and violations of the Travel Act, according to a news release.
Canales is accused of embezzling a total of $20,000 worth of property from 2018 through 2021 while he served as the elected county attorney.
The embezzlement occurred as Canales received more than $10,000 in federal benefits per year.
“Further, Canales knowingly obstructed and affected commerce by extortion by obtaining property not due to him on four separate occasions in 2021, according to the indictment,” the release stated. “Canales also allegedly knowingly and willfully used a facility in interstate and foreign commerce to carry on unlawful activity between 2017 and 2021.”
If convicted of the more serious charge of extortion, Canales faces 20 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
Canales is expected to appear in federal court on Monday, April 10.