Weeks after surrendering on corruption charges involving $15,000 in payments from a business owner facing code violations, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis suspended Miami-Dade County Commissioner Joe Martinez.
Martinez, 64, surrendered at a county jail on August 30 and has already pledged to fight the charges against him, which include unlawful compensation and conspiracy to commit unlawful compensation, according to an arrest warrant. Both are third-degree felonies punishable by up to five years in prison each.
DeSantis is expected to name a replacement to fill the District 11 seat sometime in the coming weeks.
Investigators say Martinez accepted $15,000 from a supermarket owner who was facing repeated fines for having too many storage units on the property. In exchange for the money, authorities say Martinez pushed legislation that would allow the supermarket and its landlord to legally have their storage containers.
Although that legislation ultimately did not pass, officials said the charges are still permissible.
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