ANAHEIM – The attorney for former Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu Monday criticized a proposal to audit the ex-mayor’s campaign contributions that the city council will consider Tuesday.
“A fair and impartial review of all campaign contributions related to Harry Sidhu will confirm every contribution was properly accounted for an in compliance with campaign finance requirements,” Sidhu’s attorney, Paul Meyer, said.
“An examination of past practices of the former mayors of Anaheim and elsewhere will confirm this as well. We urge the city and everyone to avoid political spin in a matter which is still under investigation with no charges filed. The city should follow the course which the community of Anaheim deserves: act professionally based on fact, not rumor; and apply the law unto others as you would have it applied unto you.”
The attorney added that Sidhu anticipates “the federal investigation to show that Harry did not disclose any closed session or secret information (to the Los Angeles Angels). He never leaked anything in the hopes of a later political campaign contribution. He worked a member of the city’s negotiating group to help reach a mutually beneficial agreement between Anaheim and the Angels. The Superior Court has ruled that the group did not violate the Brown Act.”
City officials posted the contributions Sidhu received from 2017 through the end of 2021. City Council members are expected to discuss a proposal to have an independent audit of the funds to dig deeper into them.
The city’s deal with the Angels to buy the stadium fell apart when an FBI search warrant affidavit was disclosed in court documents. The FBI has two cooperating witnesses, including one who wore a wire in meetings with Sidhu, who resigned May 24 amid allegations he fed insider information to the Angels in the proposed sale of Angel Stadium in the hopes of a substantial campaign donation, as well as cheating on sales taxes for a helicopter he bought.
The FBI alleged that Sidhu arranged to have a helicopter he bought registered in Arizona so he could save money on taxes. Sidhu was also accused of planning to ask Angels executives for up to $1 million in campaign funding for his re-election bid in exchange for helping the team in its negotiations with the city on the sale of the stadium.