L.A. bribery trial spotlights City Hall corruption in run-up to election
The Los Angeles Times reports the case of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa: The mayor and the former city administrator, William D. Daley, were convicted of bribery, but the jury had to reach that conclusion after two days of deliberation. The Los Angeles Times’s David Steingraber reports:
“Both sides were given a chance to present their cases in writing. After the first two days, the jurors were free to go. But when the case got to the third day, the jurors got a day of rest during their deliberations. Then the jury, apparently on Monday night, brought in a report stating that it was deadlocked.”
A vote was taken on that evening and a conviction was announced Wednesday morning.
The Times quotes Daley’s lawyer as saying:
“We are very pleased with the verdict. I want to thank the jurors for their time, their diligence, their dedication and for their verdict.”
Villaraigosa’s lawyer, Michael Dunn, said: “I am very pleased with the verdict and I’ll be reviewing the transcript tonight. I think the jury has made the right decision.”
Villaraigosa took an oath as mayor while Daley was overseeing an effort to transform L.A. into what he called The City Beautiful.
Villaraigosa was convicted in April of conspiring to give kickbacks to city unions in exchange for campaign money. As part of the agreement between the mayor and Daley, the city would receive $23 million at the cost of $20 million in legal fees and costs.
Villaraigosa’s term officially ends Dec. 31, but the mayor will remain as chief executive of L.A.’s largest city until a permanent replacement is chosen.
The Los Angeles Times reports that despite the political firestorm, the case is still expected to carry significant weight at the City Hall runoff election.
The Times quotes City Atty. Rocky Delgadillo as saying:
“What we learned in this case is that those who put corruptive schemes