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Wed October 24, 2012
FBI joins probe of bogus vote purge letters from Seattle
TAMPA, Fla. – The FBI is joining an investigation into bogus letters sent from Seattle to many Florida voters that raise questions about their eligibility to cast ballots.
Tampa FBI chief Steven E. Ibison said Wednesday the FBI will focus on letters received by voters in 18 counties in central and southwest Florida. State authorities have received reports of letters in at least 23 counties.
The letters claim to be from county supervisors of elections but were all postmarked from Seattle. They raise questions about the voter's citizenship and appear intended to intimidate people.
The letters also say the voter must fill out a Voter Eligibility Form in the next 15 days -- and failure to do so will result "in the removal of your name from the voter registration rolls and you will no longer be eligible to vote."
"A non-registered voter who casts a vote in the state of Florida may be subject to arrest, imprisonment, and/or other criminal sanctions," the letters state.
Ibison says voters who get a letter should first contact their local election supervisor to see if it's authentic. If not, voters should keep the letter and contact the FBI.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement has also opened an investigation.