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In Miami-Dade bid, Hialeah mayor tops $600k

Hialeah Mayor Julio Robaina announced early Monday that his campaign for Miami-Dade's top post raked in more than $600,000 in its first fundraising quarter of the year -- despite being plagued by ties to a Ponzi schemer.

Robaina is seeking to replace ousted Mayor Carlos Alvarez in a special election next month. March 31 marked the end of his first three months raising money for the race; one candidate, former state Rep. Marcelo Llorente, began running in 2009 and had topped $300,000 by the end of last year.

In a statement, Robaina said he had surpassed is quarter fundraising goal of half a million dollars.

"I am humbled by the growing number of residents that have enthusiastically embraced our campaign to transform County Hall, and energized by the grassroots support we are receiving and the willingness by so many to contribute their hard earned dollars to our campaign," he said.