FBI Arrests Mission Businessman for Federal Witness Tampering – Progress Times
The FBI arrested a Mission businessman Tuesday on a federal witness tampering charge.
Jorge O’Caña Jr., 43, of Mission – nephew of Mayor Armando “Doc” O’caña and brother of Hidalgo County Court Judge Patricia “Patty” O’Caña-Olivarez – is charged with unlawfully attempting to influence the testimony of a witness in the West Hidalgo County corruption case.
According to the indictment against him, Jorge O’Caña Jr. attempted “to influence, delay and prevent the testimony of Antonio Gonzalez, III, in an official proceeding, namely an official proceeding concerning a bribery scheme involving contracts awarded to Performance Services, Inc. by local government entities in Hidalgo County, Texas.
McAllen’s attorney Carlos M. Garcia, who represents Jorge O’Caña Jr., declined to comment.
Jorge O’Caña Jr. owns Mission-based JOCAN Construction & Pools, which builds custom pools and patios; and mission-based iSCAPE Audio and Video, specializing in home theaters.
Questions about Jorge O’Caña Jr. surfaced in January, when La Joya School Board Administrator Armin Garza reached a settlement with federal prosecutors and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States. United.
The criminal case against Garza described a conspiracy to direct contracts to Performance Services Inc., an Indiana-based company specializing in energy-saving projects.
Agua Special Utility District, La Joya Independent School District and the City of Mission approved contracts with Performance Services Inc. Mission Consolidated Independent School District and McAllen Utility decided not to enter into contract with the company.
In criminal information, Armando “Doc” O’caña is identified as “Person J.” The criminal information also mentioned “Person K” and “Person L.”
Person K was described as “an elected official from Government Entity C” who voted “to attempt to award” a contract to Performance Services Inc.
During the plot, Patricia “Patty” O’Caña-Olivarez served on the Mission school board.
The school board considered a contract with Performance Services Inc., but administrators decided to reject the deal in December 2018.
Person L, on the other hand, was described as “a businessman” related to Person J and Person K.
The suspicions centered on Jorge O’Caña Jr. and other family members, but the criminal information did not provide enough details to identify Person L.
Mission attorney Rick Salinas, who reviewed criminal information against Garza to make his case in a civil suit, said Person L was obviously Jorge O’Caña Jr.
“It couldn’t be anyone else,” Salinas said.
Salinas said he viewed the criminal information as a shot at the government.
“It’s justice, but it’s also a difficult and sad time for us in compound 3,” Salinas said, referring to the west side of Hidalgo County. “But I wish everyone the best.”
Further questions surfaced in April, when Weslaco businessman Antonio Gonzalez III pleaded guilty to a federal bribery charge.
An exhibit filed in the case showed text messages between Gonzalez and two intermediaries. The exhibit identified the intermediaries as “person B” and “person C”.
Suspicion again focused on Jorge O’Caña Jr. and other family members, but the text messages did not contain enough detail to identify Person B or Person C.
Patricia “Patty” O’Caña-Olivarez did not respond to requests for comment on Tuesday. Armando “Doc” O’caña declined to comment. They have not been arrested or charged with any crime.
Jorge O’Caña Jr. is scheduled to appear before a judge on Wednesday morning.
If convicted of witness tampering, Jorge O’Caña Jr. faces a maximum of 20 years in federal prison.