Last year, three members of Hidalgo’s staff—Alex Triantaphyllis, Wallis Nader and Aaron Dunn—faced indictment for engineering the award of an $11 million contract to Elevate Strategies to create a targeted promotional campaign for the COVID-19 vaccine.
The court revoked the contract when the investigation started in 2022, according to an article last week in the Texas Scorecard.
This week, the Rangers reportedly opened a corruption investigation in order to locate hidden records that showed how Elevate Strategies, a company founded by Hidalgo’s friend, received the award.
On the submitted warrant, Ranger Daron Parker explained that unconfirmed parties hid the documents and communications from the court in the initial round of hearings.
The hidden evidence mostly came from personal phones, and allegedly contained documents—personally edited by Hidalgo—describing the scope of the program, messages about inside details of the award process and deleted messages after the opening of the investigation.
“It was discovered that numerous documents and communications that were ordered to be produced by Grand Jury subpoena had been concealed and made unavailable during the earlier Grand Jury proceedings,” Texas Ranger Daron Parker wrote in the search warrant, released last Thursday.
Investigators have yet to determine whether felony offense of evidence tampering occurred.
Hidalgo, who ranted and raved about being “bullied” through the 2022 investigation, claimed that the county’s district attorney, Kim Ogg, abused her powers by opening the case.
“She’s abused the power of her office the way a bully abuses size on the playground,” Hidalgo said last week. “It’s so clear that this has less to do with me and my office or Darrel Jordan, Rodney Ellis, or any of the other people than it has to do with her. With her panicking about her March 5 primary and the fact that she is behind.”
Hidalgo also faced questioning for rewarding a no-bid security contract to XMI Protection. The security firm’s address ended up leading to a mailbox outside of a packing and shipping store, and is likely an illegitimate business.