(Kim Tunnicliffe/WBZ NewsRadio)
FALL RIVER (WBZ-AM) -- Get out, or be voted out.
That's the message being sent to Fall River's embattled Mayor Jasiel Correia by the Fall River City Council. Correia, indicted in October on federal tax and wire fraud charges, has been given until Christmas Eve to resign--or face a recall election.
The City Clerk was authorized to send a letter to that effect to Correia Wednesday.
Days after Correia was indicted, he told a crowd of supporters he would not step down--and gave a half-hour slide presentation making the case for his innocence. But a recall petition garnered some 4,500 signatures, twice the number required by law. Now, that recall will go into effect unless he steps down voluntarily.
This would be the second recall vote Fall River has seen in a decade; Will Flanagan, who Correia once accused of intimidating him with a gun, was voted out of office in 2014.
Correia became the youngest mayor in the city's history when he was elected in 2015 at age 23.
The charges stems from 2014 when Correia, now 27, was accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars investors, approximately $300,000 dollars put into his company, SnoOwl, and using the money to pay for what investigators describe as his "lavish" lifestyle and political ambitions.
U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling released Correira's indictment, which alleges Correira used the cash to buy a Mercedes, and spent tens of thousands of dollars on airfare, luxury hotels, casinos, and adult entertainment. Correira also allegedly filed false tax returns in 2013 and 2014, then apparently amended them in 2017 after finding out he was under federal investigation.
WBZ NewsRadio's Kendall Buhl (@KBuhlWBZ) reports