SANTA FE (KRQE) – The son of a close personal friend of former Gov. Bill Richardson struck a plea deal Monday for failing to pay taxes.
Marc Correra was a central figure in the scandal involving allegations that New Mexico investment deals were steered to Richardson’s political supporters. Correra entered the no contest plea Monday afternoon in state district court in Santa Fe.
Correra will get three months probation. He faced up to five years behind bars. He also presented a check to the state for almost $329,000 to clear his debt.
Correra earned more than $5 million in 2009, but paid no state taxes on it. He collected $22 million in finders fees during the Richardson years from companies that won deals to invest billions in state money.
Correra was part of state and federal investigations into how the state investment council and educational retirement board made investment decisions during the Richardson era.
No charges have ever been filed in New Mexico. New Mexico’s Tax and Revenue Department Secretary Demesia Padilla said this case was not about going after the Richardson’s circle.
“When the tax department deals with a taxpayer, we don’t care about party affiliation. We’re not interested in where you stand politically,” Padilla said.
If Correra completes his probation, the charge would be wiped off his record.
Correra’s father, Anthony Correra, is a close personal friend of Richardson and was one of his fundraisers.
Richardson has always proclaimed he was never involved in deciding investments and has done nothing wrong.