"I cannot continue to fight all the battles"
After a month of negotiations, Defense attorney Stuart Hanlon
and City Attorney Dennis Herrera held a press conference today
to announce suspended Supervisor Ed Jew's resignation from office
Photos by Luke
By Julia Cheever
January 10, 2008
Suspended San Francisco Supervisor Ed Jew, who faces criminal
fraud and extortion charges in state and federal courts, announced
today he is permanently resigning from his city post.
Jew said, "I have decided to resign from my position as
supervisor because I feel it is best for my family and for my
district under the current situation." He said he reached
the decision "with a heavy heart."
Jew, 47, the owner of a Chinatown flower shop, submitted his
resignation to the clerk of the Board of Supervisors on Wednesday
and it will take effect at noon on Friday.
He made his comments in a statement read by his attorney, Stuart
Hanlon, at a news conference at which Hanlon and City Attorney
Dennis Herrera announced the resignation.
In exchange for the resignation, Herrera and Mayor Gavin Newsom
will drop two separate proceedings in which they sought to oust
Jew permanently from the board for allegedly lying about his residence
when he ran to represent the city's Sunset District in 2006.
Newsom suspended Jew from office in September while removal proceedings
were pending and temporarily appointed budget aide Carmen Chu
as Jew's replacement.
Jew is alleged to have lived in Burlingame rather than the Sunset
District and to have lied about it when he announced his candidacy
and during his first five months in office.
He maintained in his statement that "I am and always have
been a San Francisco resident," but said his family moved
to San Mateo County for "a short period of time" because
his wife wanted to be near her mother and sisters while recovering
from breast cancer.
The statement was the first time that Jew's wife's illness was
given as a reason for his alleged failure to reside in San Francisco.
Hanlon, who has been Jew's sole lawyer only since last month,
said he did not know why the information was not released earlier.
Jew will continue to face two criminal prosecutions - state charges
of lying about his residence and federal charges of extortion
of local businessmen seeking city permits.
Newsom in a separate City Hall news conference said the resignation
is "a very good thing for the city" and said he wished
Jew had resigned last year when the residency and extortion allegations
He said that while the cloud over Jew has affected the supervisor's
family, it also "affected everybody in the city."
Although it has not yet been determined whether Jew is guilty
of the criminal charges, "what he is alleged to have done
is simply unacceptable," the mayor said.
Mayor Gavin Newsom
The city's action in seeking Jew's removal "sends a message
we're not going to put up with this," Newsom said.
The mayor said he would confer with Chu this afternoon on whether
she wishes to continue in the post and said she is "clearly
a frontrunner" if she wants the position.
He said he will announce a permanent replacement for Jew shortly,
possibly as soon as noon on Friday when the job officially becomes
The replacement will be in office until an election in November.
The two now-dismissed removal proceedings were misconduct charges
filed by Newsom with the city Ethics Commission in September and
a separate Superior Court lawsuit filed by Herrera in November.
In the ethics case, the commission was mandated by the city charter
to hold a hearing on the administrative charges and make a recommendation
to the Board of Supervisors on whether to oust Jew from office.
In the civil lawsuit, a judge would have ruled on whether to remove
Herrera said, "This is not a day to claim victory or vindication,
but rather a day to put acrimony behind us."
Jew said in his statement that the costs of defending the two
criminal cases in addition to the removal proceedings were "overwhelming"
and said, "I cannot continue to fight all the battles."
He said he also wanted to end the costs to taxpayers. Herrera
said his office's costs in the removal case were $300,000.
Under the agreement, Jew can't run for public office again for
five years, or for 10 years if he is convicted of a felony. Hanlon
said Jew has decided never to run for office again in any case.
The attorney said Jew is dedicated to public service, but said,
"He is naive in a lot of ways and it didn't work out."
Hanlon said he advised Jew not to attend the news conference because
of the pending criminal charges.
In the state criminal case filed by District Attorney Kamala
Harris, Jew faces nine state felony counts of perjury, election
code violations, voter fraud and providing false documents related
to his residence.
In the federal criminal case, Jew is accused of mail fraud, bribery
and extortion in connection with an alleged scheme to solicit
$84,000 from the owners of eight tapioca drink shops and a dessert
cafe in exchange for help in obtaining city permits.
A status conference in that case is scheduled before the trial
judge, U.S. District Judge Susan Illston of San Francisco, later
Hanlon said, "We're trying to figure a way out" of
the criminal cases, but said it was too soon to predict whether
they will end in trials or resolutions such as a plea agreement.
Supervisor Ed Jew.
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