From Bob Kappstatter:
We know the Bronx rental market's getting tight, but this voter fraud case - and the ruling - may just have to take the political cake.
It involves Nelson Castro, the Bronx Democratic Party's pick for the Sept. 9 primary to replace west Bronx Assemblyman Luis Diaz, gone to work for Gov. Paterson.
A judge's referee found that Castro and nine other registered voters list the one-bedroom Hampden Place apartment he and his girlfriend live in as their address, while 15 others list the Morris Ave. apartment of campaign coordinator Steve Santana, who ignored a subpoena to testify.
Referee Mary Lynn Labola found Castro's testimony "less than credible," and "incredible" he didn't know all those folks listed at his apartment, since most are relatives.
Despite all that, Bronx Supreme Court Justice Robert Seewald last week accepted her recommendation that the case be dismissed and that Castro, who could become the first Dominican elected to Bronx public office, remain on the ballot.
The case was brought by challenger Mike Soto, brother of Richard Soto, head of the independent Rising Voices Coalition. Richie told us they plan to appeal.