The wife of a Moreno Valley school board member is currently in lockup in Santa Ana. But Dora Landaverde-Torres is not sitting on a cold bunk due to a DUI crash, a shoplifting charge or swinging her purse at a Santa Ana cop. She's not even in the city jail.
The wife of Mike Rios, who wants to run for mayor of Moreno Valley, is in a federal immigration facility holding her for apparently being in the country illegally.
Landaverde-Torres, 39, was swept up during Operation Cross Check, a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) sweep of undocumented immigrants with criminal records and/or have previously been deported.
Arrested Sept. 20 as part of the seven-day, nationwide sweep that netted 2,901 illegals, Landaverde-Torres has a criminal record and has been deported before.
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She pleaded guilty on Oct.10, 1996, in Orange County Superior Court to selling or transporting marijuana, earning a sentence of 270 days in jail and three years of probation. Landaverde-Torres was later deported to her native El Salvador but obviously re-entered the United States. Illegally, according to the feds, although her attorney has filed court documents seeking to reopen the deportation case.
Her 41-year-old husband has indicated he wants to run for mayo r of Moreno Valley next year, and don't count Rios out. He's likely to parlay his wife's past and deportation case into victory at the ballot box.
Consider that after 17-year-old Norma Lopez was abducted (and, sadly, murdered) in July 2010, Rios went before television cameras saying he was a member of the Moreno Valley City Council, that he was the local media representative in the case and that he was announcing a $7,500 reward was being offered by the Riverside County city for Lopez's safe return. Mayor Bonnie Flickinger had to later explain there was no reward and that Rios was not an elected official.
Four months later, "The People's Candidate," as Rios called himself, was the top voter-getter among eight candidates for the school board seat.