Correia remains mum about federal investigation as council seeks resignation

Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia speaks to reporters outside the federal courthouse in Boston, Oct. 12, 2018. (WJAR)

The Fall River City Council voted “no confidence” in Mayor Jasiel Correia and asked him for his resignation, but fell a vote short of trying to kick him out of office.

Correia was arrested in October on federal fraud and tax charges related to his personal business.

The embattled mayor still did not want to answer questions or agree to an interview with NBC 10 News.

“We’ll figure it out one of these days,” Correia told a reporter Wednesday, a day after the vote.

Correia is refusing to resign.

Efforts to oust the mayor now appear to rest solely on a recall petition that was started last week.

“It lands with us. It lands with the citizens. That’s fine. If the council can’t do their job as the board of directors for the city, we’ll be the board of directors,” Joe Pereira, one of the recall organizers, said.

Pereira said the group is about halfway to obtaining the 2,510 signatures needed by November 19 to force a recall election against Correia.

“People have been excited to come sign that petition. People have been seeking us out. People are angry. People are insulted that they’ve been lied to. They’re insulted that the whole truth wasn’t told from the time he ran for office,” Pereira said.

Correia last week issued a statement, asking residents not to sign the recall petition.

Meanwhile, NBC 10 has also learned that state campaign finance officials notified Correia’s team that he cannot use donations to his legal defense fund to fight the charges against him, since the charges are not related to his actions as mayor.

Correia has more than $76,000 in the defense fund that was created in January.

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