Los Angeles Citizens Demand: Corrupt Councilmember José Huizar must resign

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On March 19, 2020, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that real estate appraiser and consultant Justin Jangwoo Kim had pleaded guilty to charges that he bribed a sitting Los Angeles City Councilmember with $500,000 in cash in exchange for a vote to approve a client’s real estate project. The Councilmember directly solicited the money, and provided the corrupt vote.

Although the Councilmember is not explicitly named in the DOJ filings, it is abundantly clear from the many statements of unique fact that this corrupt elected official is José Huizar, representative of CD14 whose City Hall office and Boyle Heights home were raided by the FBI on November 7, 2018.

Charging document (PDF link): https://www.courthousenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/LACityHall-KimINFO.pdf

The charges against Justin Jangwoo Kim come days after the arrest of former Councilmember Mitch Englander on public corruption charges, and the implication of his former deputy John Lee, a sitting Councilmember, in the illicit activities.

Following the FBI raids, on November 15, 2018, then-City Council President Herb Wesson removed Huizar from all his committee posts. This is a violation of the City Charter and potentially means that Huizar has not been legally serving as a Los Angeles City Councilmember for 492 days to date, while still collecting his $298,299.92 combined salary and benefits (as of 2018).

As recently as this Tuesday, Huizar was still putting forward costly motions, squandering public funds to study a traffic-free Broadway.

We cannot trust that any vote he casts or any motion he puts forward has not been paid for with stacks of cash in a cardboard liquor box.

Enough is enough. We the citizens of Los Angeles demand that José Huizar resign his post effective immediately, and not cast another tainted vote in Los Angeles City Hall. If he refuses to resign before the next scheduled City Council meeting, City Council under the direction of Council President Nury Martinez should remove him.