Mayor took bribes, headed to prison

January 30, 2013

moneyThe former mayor of the City of Cudahy, California was sentenced Tuesday to one year in federal prison for taking cash bribes in exchange for supporting the opening of a “medical marijuana” store in the city.

David Silva, 62, the then-mayor of Cudahy, Angel Perales, 44, who ran the Code Enforcement Division of the Cudahy Community Services Department and Osvaldo Conde, 51, who was a member of the Cudahy City Council, were implicated in the bribery scheme.

According to an affidavit filed in this case: “On the afternoon of February 28, 2012, following weeks of bribe solicitations and related discussions, made during recorded meetings and telephone calls, Conde, Silva and Perales met an FBI confidential informant at the El Potrero nightclub in Cudahy, California. The three Cudahy city officials accepted a total of $15,000 cash as bribe payments. Later that evening, Conde met the confidential informant to receive an additional $2,000 cash as a bribe.”

The affidavit describes an investigation in which federal law enforcement agents recorded a number of conversations in which the Cudahy city officials explain that the Cudahy City Council planned to approve only one or two permits for marijuana stores in Cudahy. According to the affidavit, Perales sought to broker an arrangement between an FBI informant and city officials in which the informant would make cash payments in exchange for the officials supporting a request for one of the permits.

Prior to a meeting with Conde and Silva at a Pico Rivera restaurant, Perales instructed the informant how he should broach the topic of paying the bribes, and later instructed the informant on how to present the bribes, specifying that the payments should be in cash only, according to the affidavit.

“Mr. Silva sold the integrity and authority of the mayor’s office for his own personal gain,” said United States Attorney André Birotte Jr. “Elected officials are expected to obey the law. When they don’t, those officials should expect to go to prison.”

 


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The Gimlet Eye

Ain’t government grand?


missmuffet

When I see a story like this I cant help but wonder about the whole Wal mart fiasco in Atascadero. How all the dirty backroom stuff was raised by community members many years ago. I cant help wonder if guys like OMalley, McKinney, Clay and the like were getting their palms greased by those slick fellas from Arkansas. But hey … Walmart would never stoop to bribery would they?


http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/01/10/us-walmart-bribery-congress-idUSBRE9090UY20130110


Dexter

At least the people of Bell- Cudahay (primarily a hispanic community) had the cajones to rise up and throw the SOB’s out of office. Here in SLO Co we keep reelecting the jerks


Paso_citizen

Another (of many) examples of the fine people serving the citizens in this state (or city in this case). Sarcasm!


Would have to believe that the Cudahy officials were not the smartest fish in the pond, but that can most likely be said of many others (ie. Bell,CA comes to mind). Certain members of the SLO BOS would also be on that list.


I would also add that the city officials of Paso Robles may be included, except for the fact that they failed the ‘minimum smartness’ test several months ago.


Oh, the tangled webs we weave – not realizing that justice will eventually be served.


justme

It’s rampant and ramping with the faltered economy. In addition, Latino culture at work here. I’ve spent time in Mexico, they value all attempts to beat the system. Duh-hh, the Spanish rode ’em hard. I was amazed when I learned back then (30 yrs. ago) bustin’ outa the joint brought congratulation more than pursuit from the authorities.

This guy forgot what country he was in for a min. He’ll do the “bullet” & be back at it. Because it’s the only game in town.


justme

You mean lovely IB?


panflash

Cindy- I think you’re reading the article incorrectly. The article states:


“According to the affidavit, Perales sought to broker an arrangement between an FBI informant and city officials in which the informant would make cash payments in exchange for the officials supporting a request for one of the permits.

Prior to a meeting with Conde and Silva at a Pico Rivera restaurant, Perales instructed the informant how he should broach the topic of paying the bribes, and later instructed the informant on how to present the bribes, specifying that the payments should be in cash only, according to the affidavit.”


The way I read that, Perales was part of the plot, not a hero. The unnamed FBI informant seems to be the hero in this case, not Perales. The second paragraph of the article states that Perales, the mayor and the city council member all were “implicated in the bribery scheme.”


Booty JuJu

This is SOP and rampant, widespread and common. What he was snagged for was a small fraction of his total take and one year = crime does in fact pay and pay well.


BeenThereDoneThat

I had never even heard of Cudahy till about two or three years ago. At the time I was watching something on t.v. about gangs etc. Cudahy is one of the worst places in Southern Ca. It makes Watts and Compton seem like nice places. SCARY!!


Cindy

WOW, So the city employee ( code enforcement manager) set up a sting and netted two city council members. I wonder if the code enforcement employee was working on his own or if he had the blessings of the city manager or even other council members? Interesting story. The dirty politics must have been rampant.


r0y

The way I read it, the city employee was instructing the briber of HOW to properly bribe the mayor and councilman… which begs the question: how does Mr. Perales know how to properly bribe officials?


Thankfully this involved POT, therefore the feds had no problem swooping in and spending lots of money getting the “bad guys” in this small-time, local jurisdiction criminal case. Yay big governtment vs. local government. That’ll teach these “states and municipalities” who the big dog really is.


panflash

Cindy- I think you’re reading the article incorrectly. The article states:


“According to the affidavit, Perales sought to broker an arrangement between an FBI informant and city officials in which the informant would make cash payments in exchange for the officials supporting a request for one of the permits.

Prior to a meeting with Conde and Silva at a Pico Rivera restaurant, Perales instructed the informant how he should broach the topic of paying the bribes, and later instructed the informant on how to present the bribes, specifying that the payments should be in cash only, according to the affidavit.”


The way I read that, Perales was part of the plot, not a hero. The unnamed FBI informant seems to be the hero in this case, not Perales. The second paragraph of the article states that Perales, the mayor and the city council member all were “implicated in the bribery scheme.”


Cindy

Yes panflash, I agree with you and r0y. I misread the story. I initially interpreted the part that Perales played as the middleman who set them up through the FBI. You’re absolutely correct, Perales was in on the take with the other two council members. Thanks for the clarification.