Gov. Martinez defends state tax and revenue chief

Governor Martinez
***FILE*** Governor Martinez

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) – Gov. Susana Martinez says she has total faith in state Taxation and Revenue Secretary Demesia Padilla about allegations of wrongdoing by Padilla until evidence reveals that she shouldn’t.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that Padilla, who has served as tax secretary since 2011, is accused of trying to pressure employees to give preferential treatment to her former client in a tax audit.

The allegations against Padilla were brought to light this month by State Auditor Tim Keller. Keller’s office hired a firm that found evidence supporting the accusations.

A spokesman for Padilla says that Keller never interviewed Padilla or other department officials. A spokesman for Keller maintains that the investigation “included interviews with multiple people” at the department.

The state attorney general is reviewing the evidence.

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