The mother and brother of Los Angeles Councilmember Jose Huizar may have been involved in his pay-to-play scheme, federal prosecutors say.
Federal prosecutors have alleged in an affidavit that two unnamed relatives helped Huizar launder bribes he received from developers and other sources between 2014 and 2017, according to the L.A. Times.
Those two relatives — listed as Relative A-2 and Relative A-3 — appear to be Isidra Huizar and Salvador Huizar, the councilmember’s mother and brother, respectively. Isidra Huizar denied she helped launder cash and said that the federal government’s allegations against the councilmember are not true.
Prosecutors say that the councilmember gave his mother more than $108,000 in cash between 2014 and 2017 and that she transferred roughly the same amount back to him, according to the Times. The councilmember and Salvador Huizar did the same with around $130,000 in cash, prosecutors allege.
Investigators interviewed both Isidra Huizar and Salvador Huizar in November 2018, the same month they raided Jose Huizar’s City Hall office and home and the first time the investigation became public knowledge.
At the time, both denied taking any money from Huizar, but earlier this year they both admitted they did receive money from him. Isidra Huizar said that was because in 2018 investigators didn’t clearly explain their questions to her.
She said her son gave her money for school tuition for his children and that he asked her for blank checks to cover expenses. Salvador Huizar said his brother also asked him to cover expenses and admitted he lied to investigators.
Earlier this month, The Real Deal reported on how the FBI built their case against the councilmember, and how several Chinese developers and real estate firm Carmel Partners became embroiled in the scandal. [LAT] — Dennis Lynch