With just a few days before a Doral runoff election, eight people are under investigation over whether they used an office building as their voting registration address.
The Miami-Dade state attorney’s office is looking into possible voter fraud. The law required voters to live at the address they list on their registration.
The office building in question, 7950 NW 53rd St. in Doral. In the registration, the voters claim to live in the same third-floor suite that houses Offix Solutions, a shared workplace .
But according to city of Doral records, the business behind Suite 337 isn’t zoned for residential use.
“The certificate of use for the building is strictly commercial,” said city spokesman Evan Owen. “Code compliance will be inspecting that address to insure that there aren’t eight hide-a-bed sofas.”
According to state records, 34-year-old Jonathan Aserraf is the registered agent of Offix Solutions along with his brother, Joel Aserraf.
Elections Department spokesman Roberto Rodriguez told the Miami Herald that state officials are investigating Jonathan Aserraf, along with the seven others who listed the commercial space as their residence: Jeannette Esmeralda Santiago, Gulnaz Shirlyazdanova, Iskander Umarov, Joseph Harrison Parris, Robert William Parris, Rollyn M Sy and Willie Son Sy.
“There is no fraud here,”Aserraf told the Herald Thursday.
“I used my office address to register to vote,” he said. “I explained the whole situation, investigators came and went and that’s it. Our clients probably used the office address instead as well. Some use it to receive mail instead of receiving it at the house.”
Aserraf confirmed that at least six of the seven others being investigated are clients of his.
“They rent office space so they probably just used this address,” adding that he doesn’t know whether his clients live inside or outside Doral.
Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections Christina White said voters must register where they live.
“They sign an oath stating that they are abiding by Florida law,” White said via email to the Miami Herald. “While the department does not have investigative authority, we follow our protocol and provide the information to the proper authorities whenever we learn of any irregularities."
Doral voters head to the polls on Tuesday for a runoff election since no candidate secured the simple majority (50 percent plus one vote) needed to win outright on Nov. 8.
The only post decided last month was City Council Seat 3, in which Councilwoman Christi Fraga was reelected. Fraga got 53 percent of the vote and research analyst Digna Cabral and certified public accountant David Hernandez received 25 and 21 percent, respectively.
On Tuesday's ballot are incumbent Mayor Luigi Boria and former mayor Juan Carlos Bermudez. Running for Council Seat 1 are community activist Claudia Mariaca and resident Adriana Moyano.
Bermudez earned about 47 percent of the vote while Boria secured 33 percent. Sandra Ruiz, 54, an incumbent councilman, received about 20 percent of the vote. Claudia Mariaca, 42, a PTA board member and homeowners association director, earned 27 percent of the vote. Adriana Moyano, 43, a marketing company owner, won 23 percent of the votes. Four other candidates received the remaining votes.