Jamie Estrada, a former aide to Gov. Susana Martinez (R-N.M.) has been indicted by a federal grand jury on computer intrusion and false statement charges, the Federal Bureau of Investigation announced Thursday in an email alert.
Among Estrada’s alleged victims are Martinez and members of her staff.
According to the FBI, Estrada was indicted on 12 counts of intercepting wire communications on Martinez’s campaign website and two counts of making false statements to FBI agents.
“In summer 2009,” the FBI said, Gov. Martinez, who was then the district attorney in Dona Ana County, began assembling a political campaign as she prepared to enter the November 2010 gubernatorial race. In July 2009, one of the governor’s early political supporters registered an Internet domain that was designated as www.susana2010.com (the domain) for a two-year period through an online service. The supporter then donated the domain, including its username and password, to the governor’s political organization. The username and password were required for making administrative changes to the domain, including posting content to the domain’s website and creating e-mail accounts associated with the domain. The username and password also were required to renew the registration for the domain, which was scheduled to expire on July 18, 2011. As the owner of the domain, the governor’s political organization had the exclusive right to renew the registration before it expired and during a 42-day grace period following the expiration date.”
Martinez and several aides had email accounts connected with the domain, according to the FBI, and Estrada had access to the email addresses and passwords.
“Estrada allegedly left the campaign in December 2009,” the FBI said. “Before his departure, the governor allegedly sent Estrada an e-mail requesting that he return all information belonging to the campaign, including any usernames and passwords to any accounts.”
Martinez and her aides continued to use the email accounts after she became governor in 2011, the FBI said.
In late July 2011, Estrada allegedly used the username and password to renew the domain and to change the domain’s settings so that, instead of going to their intended recipients, incoming e-mail communications were directed to an e-mail account on a different domain that was controlled by Estrada,” the FBI said. “As a result, between late July 2011 and June 2012, Estrada allegedly received e-mail communications intended for recipients, including Martinez and members of her staff, who had e-mail accounts associated with the domain.”
Investigating the case was the Albuquerque Division of the FBI.
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