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Developer Avoids Trial By Paying a $1.4 Million Settlement Instead of $14 Million Penalty

OKABE & HAUSHALTER Jan 14, 2021 White Collar Crimes

Developing land in LA county takes a monumental amount of paperwork, meetings, private and governmental, red-tape, more meetings, and merely waiting for someone to sign a piece of paper to get the work completed. When a government official interferes and abuses his power to line his own pockets, he or she will put the developer in the line of fire. The developer simply wants to get the job done, but it is tough to get out of the situation unscathed when bureaucracy is the fight. The bribery defense attorneys at Okabe & Haushalter want to talk about a recent news story involving a bribery case in Los Angeles County.

What Happened in This Case?

In January of 2021, Carmel Partners, which is developing the 520 Mateo tower in L.A.’s Art District, will pay $1.2 million as part of a non-prosecution agreement. This will spare the company from becoming a defendant in a corruption case.

Carmel Partners got involved with Los Angeles Councilman Jose Huizar—a massive mistake on Carmel Partner’s part. According to documents, Huizar asked a Carmel executive if he would provide $250,000. In exchange for the payment, Huizar would reduce the company’s amount into a fund for affordable housing.

The company did not respond to the request. But Huizar went ahead and reduced the amount of affordable housing that the developer would need to provide. Federal documents show that Partners donated to Huizar’s wife, Richelle, shortly after that occurred.

Huizar’s actions saved Carmel $14 million, but the prosecution had a tough time delivering an explicit quid pro quo. They will pay this penalty over three years.

At Okabe & Haushalter, we want to help you if you have been accused of a bribery charge.

People convicted of a bribery charge can be negatively impacted for a long time:

  • Unable to find skilled work
  • Unable to continue in their career
  • Face possible jail time
  • Loss of connection with family and friends
  • Long trial periods
  • Damaged reputation

We want to help you build the best defense possible for your case. We want to assist in the investigation so you can get the most favorable terms possible, which can include having the case dismissed altogether.

Call Us For a Free Consultation in Your Case

If you or someone you love has been accused of bribery, we want to help you with your case immediately. Time is quickly ticking away, and we want to be able to help you build your defense and be the advocates you need in this trying time. We want to help you avoid:

  • A criminal record that could impact your career and livelihood
  • Long trials with missing work and income
  • A damaged reputation
  • Long sentencing with separation from your loved ones

Again, we want to help you with your case so you can put this terrible situation behind you. When you need a Los Angeles bribery defense lawyer, you can contact Okabe & Haushalter for a free consultation by clicking here or calling 310-430-7799 for a free case evaluation.