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Government media executive accused of taking kickbacks

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published November 20, 2006


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MIAMI - A senior executive with U.S. government-run station TV Marti has been indicted for allegedly accepting more than $100,000 in kickbacks from a company doing business with his employer.

A federal grand jury indicted Jose M. Miranda on charges that he took bribes from Perfect Image Film and Video Productions, a vendor doing business with the Office of Cuba Broadcasting, prosecutors said.

The office oversees the TV Marti operation, and pays Miranda an annual salary of $103,000, federal records show.

"Miranda was accepting these monies during the same time that he approved requisitions and invoices for services rendered by Perfect Image to TV Marti," U.S. Attorney R. Alexander Acosta said.

The four-count indictment claims Miranda falsified financial disclosure forms in 2002, 2003 and 2004. If convicted, he faces as much as five years in prison per count.

Miranda told the Miami Herald: "I haven't even talked to my lawyer. I can't say anything."

Joe O'Connell, a spokesman for the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which oversees the Office of Cuba Broadcasting, said Miranda had been placed on administrative leave and faced suspension without pay until the case is resolved.

[Last modified November 19, 2006, 23:59:50]


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