DeSantis Announces New Director to Oversee Office Investigating Election Crimes

July 6, 2022 Updated 11:53 AM ET

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July 6, 2022 Updated 11:46 A.M. ET

TALLAHASSEE (FLV) – Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Peter Antonacci as the new director of the Office of Election Crimes and Security that will investigate election crimes in Florida.

Governor DeSantis signed legislation in April creating the Office of Election Crimes and Security, which is housed within the Florida Department of State. The office will investigate all election crimes in Florida and oversee the implementation of measures to make sure the state’s elections are secure. 

“Peter Antonacci has dedicated his career to serving the state of Florida,” DeSantis said. “I am confident he will lead the Office of Election Crimes and Security with integrity and ensure that Florida’s elections are the most secure in the nation.”

Antonacci has served as the Broward County Supervisor of Elections and has had other election security experience as a Deputy Attorney General and Statewide Prosecutor.

“In Florida, our freedoms and rights are protected by the rule of law and our elections are no different. Judge Antonacci’s formidable knowledge of Florida election law and his experience as a Supervisor of Elections will ensure that our laws are enforced and that voters have confidence in our elections,” said Florida Secretary of State and Chief Election Officer Cord Byrd.

DeSantis Signs Bill to Investigate Election Crimes and Voter Fraud in Florida

The office will review reports of alleged election law violations and investigate any violations. The office will oversee the department’s voter fraud hotline.

“Free and fair elections are vital to our democracy, and I applaud Governor DeSantis for selecting such a respected, experienced attorney to lead this important mission and provide assurance to voters that anyone who commits elections fraud will face justice,” Attorney General Ashley Moody said.

Antonacci most recently served as Director and Chief Judge of the Division of Administrative Hearings, following his appointment as Broward County Elections Supervisor in 2018. Before that role, Antonacci served as General Counsel to former Governor Rick Scott.

“I’ve known Peter Antonacci for many years and he is ethical, hardworking, and committed to acting with integrity. He will call balls and strikes. I trust him to make decisions that will strengthen our right to vote,” Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said. 

Following Antonacci’s appointment, Brian Newman will begin immediately serving as acting Director and Chief Judge of the Division of Administrative Hearings.

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