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City Hall in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. (Photo: Jimmy Emerson)

Two more charged in Perth Amboy gift card for ballots scheme

Proecutor’s office says two women sought to tamper with witness by harassing her

By David Wildstein, November 04 2022 5:08 pm

Two Perth Amboy women were charged with witness tampering after they allegedly harassed the cooperating witness in a scheme to trade absentee ballots for a $20 Shop-Rite gift card.

Maria Peralta and Annet Sanchez face summonses from the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s office for putting personal information about the cooperating witness.

Ana Camilo, a campaign staffer working with Perth Amboy City Council candidate Jeanette Rios, was arrested last week.   She was caught on tape offering to give a voter a gift card if she could fill out their vote-by-mail ballot.

The prosecutor’s office received word of Camilo’s actions on October 17 and sent an undercover officer to investigate; posing as a Perth Amboy voter, the officer allowed Camilo to fill out their absentee ballot and received a $20 gift card in return.

Camilo was arrested immediately afterwards, with the absentee ballot still in her possession. 

Perth Amboy’s nonpartisan election for three at-large council seats has drawn nine candidates, divided into three slates each led by an incumbent member of the council. Mayor Helmin Caba and the Perth Amboy Democratic organization have endorsed a rival slate to Rios’s, led by Councilwoman Milady Tejeda.

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