A new twist: Fraud allegations added in Stamford

Earlier this week in Federal Court a former Stamford Democratic Chair was found guilty of absentee voting fraud: Former Stamford Democratic Chief Found Guilty of 28 Felonies in Ballot Fraud Case <read>

For those not familiar with the case, suspicions started with a single voter attempting to vote in-person being told that he has already voted absentee, followed by a State Elections Enforcement Investigation leading to a referral to  Federal investigators. The Dem Chair was indicted, while a former Republican Town Clerk turned state’s evidence and was not indicted – this story says her crimes were less, not so sure

Mallozzi chose a court trial rather than a jury trial, so it was Randolph’s job to render a verdict.

One line in the judge’s decision seems to summarize his thinking on the case.

“By the defendant’s hand alone, 26 people could have had their civil right to vote extinguished,” Randolph said, reading his verdict into the record.

According to the trial record, 26 fraudulent absentee ballots were submitted to the town clerk’s office in a “scheme” involving Mallozzi and former Republican Town Clerk Donna Loglisci. The state, however, raised instances involving 14 voters, charging Mallozzi with 14 counts each of 2nd-degree forgery and false statement in absentee balloting.

Mallozzi, 72, could be sentenced to a maximum of five years in prison, or a fine that could total $140,000, or bo

But there was one surprising development in the trial:

Among the documents was a complaint sent to the FBI by a city official alleging improprieties in the town clerk’s office during the 2017 municipal election. Because of that, Randolph said he was obligated to inform the witnesses that they had the right not to testify because anything they said could be used against them by the FBI in its investigation.

Seeger said he’d planned to call Loglisci and two clerks that worked under her, Diane Pesiri and Maria Stabile, in his final chance to question them near the end of the trial. But Pesiri and Stabile declined to testify, as did Willy Giraldo, who also received ballots from Loglisci. After that, Seeger did not try to bring Loglisci or other witnesses to the stand.

Now there is more information: Stamford Clerk Warns FBI of Possible Ballot Fraud in Second Election <read>

About a year after she was elected town clerk in 2017, Lyda Ruijter discovered an odd database in her office computer files.

It contained information “that never should have been there,” Ruijter said Thursday.

The data listed 230 Stamford residents who’d voted by absentee ballot in the 2017 municipal election, according to Ruijter. She did not understand why the names were separated from the full list of absentee voters, she said.

In any given election, there should be exactly one list of absentee voters, she said…

She continued examining the data and found something else strange, Ruijter said.

Many absentee voters on the short list did not return their ballots to the town clerk’s office. But the full list showed that those same absentee voters did return their ballots, Ruijter said.

Further examination revealed that the converse was also true, according to Ruijter – the data showed that voters on the short list who were marked as having returned their ballots were marked on the full list as not having returned them.

The upshot of the conflicting sets of data was that the total number of voters who’d returned their absentee ballots was about the same, Ruijter found…

Her opponent, Loglisci, had lost the election with 44 percent of the in-person vote, Ruijter said. But Loglisci had won 62 percent of the absentee ballot vote…

In her letter Ruijter told the FBI that, at election time, Loglisci and select staff members sometimes worked “for many hours after closing,” once prompting a union grievance that overtime was unfairly offered only to the two clerks designated to issue absentee ballots.

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