By The Associated Press - January 22, 2010
EL PASO, Texas — Prosecutors played video showing money changing hands in the federal trial of a judge in El Paso accused of offering court favors in exchange for cash and sex. State District Judge Manuel Barraza on Thursday was seen in the video, at his courthouse office, accepting almost $5,000 from the sister of an inmate facing drug charges. Barraza was arrested in April 2009, just months after he took office. He was indicted on charges of mail fraud, wire fraud and lying to a federal agent. The video included testimony from Sarai Valencia. FBI agents equipped her with a portable hidden camera and a body wire. Valencia was expected back on the stand Friday. Valencia testified, during cross examination, that she received $2,000 for helping the FBI build its case against Barraza.
The El Paso Times by Ramon Bracamontes - April 3, 2009