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Former Flagstaff Mayoral Candidate Victor Varela Sentenced To Probation

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Former Flagstaff Mayoral candidate Victor Varela was sentenced to two years probation Friday after pleading guilty to a felony count of presentment of a false instrument for filing as part of a plea deal. The 59-year-old was indicted by a grand jury on 12 counts, including fraudulent schemes and practices, presentment of false instrument for filing and a signing of petitions violation back in June. Varela was running for mayor of Flagstaff in 2020, but withdrew from the race when he announced his decision on the KAFF News Facebook page. Between January and April of 2020, Varela knowingly made and submitted forged petition signatures, claiming it was tough to get signatures during the COVID-19 pandemic. He told the “Arizona Daily Sun” in an interview last summer, “I got the names from Facebook. I got the addresses from a phone book. I made up addresses.” As part of his sentence, Varela can’t seek public office for five years and he has to write an apology to the community and pay to publish it for three straight Sundays in the “Daily Sun.”

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