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Suspected ringer-candidate in David Rivera case to plea guilty


A former candidate whose suspicious campaign finances led to an FBI investigation of him and former Congressman David Rivera plans to plead guilty next Wednesday in federal court to conspiracy and false-statement charges.

The change of plea by Justin Lamar Sternad was expected to happen soon because he's cooperating with the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Sternad has told investigators that Rivera's friend, Ana Alliegro, was his campaign manager and helped steer secret money to his congressional campaign against the former congressman's rival, Joe Garcia, who went on to beat Sternad in the Aug. 14 Democratic primary. Garcia then defeated Rivera in the general election.

Rivera has denied wrongdoing. Alliegro's whereabouts are unclear.

Here's last week's story

And here's last week's column