I like to call the region surrounding the 710 Freeway “The Corruption Corridor.”
The mayor, a former mayor and a campaign fixer/suspected bagman who hoped to be on the council face some serious felony bribery/perjury charges after finally appearing in court Wednesday.
If you believe what the DA alleges, small-time greed drove these political hacks to basically extort a developer who may have been in over his head in the first place.
The truth of the matter is Temple City is probably not only local government corrupted by the easy cash that flows from developer’s pockets. It’s just that most developers aren’t carrying around a pocket wire to record the transaction and burn the council. Here’s an excerpt from our story on Boss Wilson and her crew:
LOS ANGELES – Temple City’s mayor, its former mayor and a former City Council candidate were indicted Wednesday on felony charges of bribery, perjury and other counts related to a nine-month corruption probe into their dealings with a local developer.
The 21-count indictment was returned Monday by the Los Angeles County Grand Jury and unsealed Wednesday by Judge Patricia Schnegg at the criminal courts building in downtown Los Angeles.
Temple City Mayor Judy Wong was charged with six counts of bribery, three counts of perjury and one count of solicitation of bribery. Former mayor Cath Wilson was charged with three counts of bribery and three counts of perjury.
Former City Council candidate Scott Carwile, who was also once Wilson’s campaign treasurer, was charged with four counts of perjury and one misdemeanor count of failing to report a campaign contribution.
“It’s actually quite rare that we bring bribery charges, because of the nature of the crime,” said Deputy District Attorney David Demerjian, who heads the DA’s Public Integrity Division. “Normally, neither side involved in the bribery will report it to us. It’s usually beneficial to them to just continue on with the conspiracy.”
Bail was set at $250,000 for Wong, $150,000 for Wilson and $100,000 for Carwile. All three posted bail, were booked, and were ordered to return July 9 for a pre-trial hearing.
DA’s officials say search warrants were served at City Hall this morning and at 2 other locations. Three council members are under investigation for allegedly taking bribes from developer Randy Wang in exchange for providing smooth sailing to Wang’s proposed mixed-use development on Las Tunas.
*UPDATE 1:42 p.m. from reporter Alfred Lee:
Investigators searched City Hall and five (not two) residences: Mayor Cathe Wilson, council members Judy Wong and David Capra, former City Council candidate Scott Carwile (whom Randy Wang has accused of taking cash bribes for his campaign) and Jay Liyanage, the former project manager of Wang’s Piazza mall project.
Property values in the Inland Empire are sinking to new lows, while the Assessor is suspected of fiddling with nose candy.
Bill Postmus, once a rising star in the Inland Empire’s Republican Party, was arrested Thursday morning in possession of a pile of meth. One can only guess what else investigators found when they raided his house, but it’s a well-known fact that meth addicts have addicts have a lot of proclivities that don’t make for family reading. Here’s the early story from the San Bernardino Sun:
Assessor Bill Postmus was arrested this morning after investigators say they found methamphetamine in his Rancho Cucamonga house while serving a search warrant for an ongoing investigation related to possible abuse of his authority as a county official.
About 50 San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office investigators and investigative technicians served 10 search warrants in six cities, including San Bernardino, Highland, Apple Valley, Victorville, Rancho Cucamonga and Rancho Santa Margarita in Orange County.
District Attorney spokeswoman Susan Mickey said she could not disclose specific locations.
But she did confirm that a search warrant was also served at the office of Jim Erwin, a former assistant assessor who now serves