12/14/2011 2:19PM

Louisiana HBPA case sentencing postponed

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The sentencing date for Sean Alfortish, the former president of the Louisiana Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association involved in an election-rigging case, has been continued to Jan. 19, according to a spokesperson for the offices of U.S. Attorney Jim Letten.

Alfortish, 43, had originally been scheduled for sentencing on Thursday, Dec. 15. Back in August, he pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud, identity fraud, and health care fraud. Alfortish faces penalties of up to five years in prison and/or $250,000 in fines.

The case dates back to a 2008 Louisiana election of the horsemen's group. Alfortish was seeking his second term as president, after being first elected in 2005. He was reelected, but in November 2010 a federal grand jury returned a 29-count indictment against Alfortish and Mona Romero, the organization's former executive director, that alleged the pair had conspired with others to "rig the outcome" of the election. Romero pleaded guilty in July, and is also scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 19.

Alfortish admitted in his plea that fraudulent ballots were cast using the Social Security numbers of some members of the Louisiana horsemen's association without their consent, and that under his direction three people subsequently flew to Florida, Kentucky, Ohio, and Texas to mail those ballots. The health care fraud charges concern payments made from the Louisiana Horsemen's Medical Benefit trust account. 

Alfortish served as president of the Louisiana horsemen's association from 2005-2010. A former magistrate and practicing attorney, he is a resident of Kenner, La.