Home   Google ARCHIVE SEARCH: Date:

Ed Jew's lawyer Fazio fires back,
says Herrera is unfair

Attorney Bill Fazio
Photo courtesy SmartVoter.org

By Tamara Barak

June 18, 2007

A lawyer for San Francisco Supervisor Ed Jew fired back at City Attorney Dennis Herrera this afternoon, saying Herrera's attempt to oust the supervisor is unfair and a bid for publicity.

Defense attorney Bill Fazio said Herrera's decision to initiate the legal process to remove Jew from office was unnecessary, given that Jew is facing nine felony charges including perjury and election fraud.

Fazio said he advised Jew not comply with Herrera's civil investigation because he feared anything provided to Herrera could be used against Jew in a criminal court.

Herrera's civil action against Jew "is going to get tied up and take a long time," Fazio said.

The city attorney should have instead waited for the district attorney's criminal probe to be completed.

"I would hope the city attorney would back off and allow Ed Jew to defend against the criminal charges against him like anyone else would be allowed to do - in a court with the proper rules of discovery," Fazio said.

Jew still has no plans to resign. He also accused both Herrera and district attorney Kamala Harris of fighting for the spotlight.

"Why are you wasting the energy of two city agencies? It seems like each agency is trying to outdo the other for attention from the public," Fazio said.

But at a news conference this morning, Herrera called Fazio's position "ridiculous," pointing out that the city attorney was trying to speak to Jew weeks before criminal charges were filed June 12.

Herrera said the city attorney's office had given the supervisor four weeks and three extensions to provide evidence that he lives in the Sunset District, which he represents. Jew has not provided proof of residency and has consistently refused to meet with city investigators, Herrera said.

"This is unfortunate and I take no pleasure in the fact we have reached this point, but the residents of District Four deserve a legally elected representative that legitimately represents their interests," Herrera said.

"In seeking Supervisor Jew's removal from office, I am acting to remedy a crisis in governmental legitimacy that is unprecedented in San Francisco's modern history."

Herrera said he would petition California Attorney General Jerry Brown on Tuesday to allow Herrera's office to sue for the supervisor's removal in state court. Jew will have 15 days to respond to Herrera's petition.

Jew's attorneys have been served with the notice this morning.

Herrera said today that while Jew was evading the city attorney's questions, investigators were amassing hundreds of pages of "overwhelming evidence" that the supervisor does not live in the Sunset District.

Jew's purported residence on 28th Avenue had been vacant between July 11, 2006 - 30 days before he filed his declaration of candidacy - and May 2007, when news reports first raised questions about the supervisor's residency, Herrera said.

City attorney investigators based their findings on utility bills, tax returns, checking accounts, vehicle registrations, credit reports and interviews with nearly three-dozen neighbors.

"We ferreted out the facts and we are taking action," Herrera said.

Jew never provided documents that would contradict the city attorney's office's conclusion that his primary residence is in Burlingame, Herrera said.

"If I had to prove where I lived, I could pull my wallet out of my breast pocket right now. It shouldn't be that difficult," Herrera said.

Herrera said he is also meeting with San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom this week and will bring up Newsom's option of suspending Jew for official misconduct.

Jew's supporters say the rookie supervisor is being unfairly targeted. At a rally Friday, several backers suggested he is the victim of racism. Herrera today called such allegations "an inflammatory stoking of the flame."

"I think that is an argument with no basis in the facts of he law. It does everyone a disservice," he said.

Jew surrendered to Burlingame police on Tuesday on the criminal charges. He immediately posted bail and was released.

Both Herrera's office and the district attorney's office began their investigation of Jew May 18, immediately after the FBI's public corruption unit executed search warrants on the supervisor's properties.

The FBI is reportedly investigating $40,000 in cash Jew allegedly accepted from a group of businessmen having permit problems. Jew denies wrongdoing.

Copyright © 2007 by Bay City News, Inc. -- Republication, Rebroadcast or any other Reuse without the express written consent of Bay City News, Inc. is prohibited.




The Hunger Site

Cooking Classes
in Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires B&B

Calitri in southern Italy

L' Aquila in Abruzzo

Health Insurance Quotes


Bruce Brugmann's


Civic Center

Dan Noyes

Greg Dewar

Griper Blade


Malik Looper






MetroWize Urban Guide

Michael Moore

N Judah Chronicles


Robert Solis

SF Bay Guardian





SFWillie's Blog



Sweet Melissa