Former L.A. Councilman Pleads Guilty to Racketeering, Tax Evasion

Former L.A. Councilman Pleads Guilty to Racketeering, Tax Evasion

Former Los Angeles city councilman, José Huizar, has pleaded guilty to two federal charges — racketeering and tax evasion.

The charges stem from a bribery and money laundering scheme Huizar ran out of City Hall. According to a report from L.A.’s ABC 7, the ex-councilman accepted over $1.5 million in cash, gambling trips, and escort services in exchange for his support of a planned downtown hotel development. 

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Huizar is facing a maximum of 25 years in federal prison. 

As part of his plea agreement, which ABC 7 reports was filed Thursday, Huizar agreed to serve a minimum of 9 years in prison, but prosecutors said they will seek at least 13 years behind bars. 

Huizar is also expected to be ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $1.85 million.

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He issued a statement saying, “I want to apologize to my family, constituents, and to the City of Los Angeles. My actions were not acceptable, and I will accept the consequences for my actions.”

“My family needs some healing, and I hope that my acceptance of responsibility will allow the City to heal from the harm that my actions have caused,” the former local politician concluded. 

Huizar’s sentencing is currently scheduled for April 3, with U.S. District Judge John Walter presiding.

What do you think about Huizar’s guilty plea?

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