- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 15, 2015

RIO GRANDE CITY, Texas (AP) - A South Texas judge arrested in a drugs and bribery investigation has been suspended without pay.

Starr County Justice of the Peace Salvador Zarate (zuh-RAH’-tay) was suspended by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct.

He was arrested Monday on charges of possession of a controlled substance and two counts of bribery, then freed on $23,000 bond.

Zarate was also suspended Monday amid allegations that he solicited and accepted a $500 bribe to lower bond for two defendants in drug case. An informant reported the offer. Investigators provided marked $20 bills, which allegedly were given to Zarate last December.

The June 30 indictment says the judge also possessed cocaine.



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