Saturday, June 04, 2005

LA Politics is Back to 1930s Corruption

I'm currently working on a story about how LA politicians, the media, Hollywood, the judiciary and Warren Christopher of the law firm O'Melveny & Myers brought 1930s corruption back to LA.

Kudos to LA Weekly reporter Jeffrey Anderson who revisits the subject and LA's Underground Power Broker, Horacio Vignali. Anderson describes Vignali’s drug ties, his son Carlos’ 15-year sentence for cocaine trafficking, and Bill Clinton’s role to pardon Vignali after serving only six years of his 15-year sentence. Why did so many of LA’s political players, including Antonio Villaraigosa and US Attorney Alejandro Mayorkas, lobby for Vignali’s early release over the objections of the prosecutors and officers who knew the case? Of the LA lawyers, politicians and journalists, US District Judge David Doty says the Clinton deal “had money and corruption and fraud written all over it.”

Corrupt lawyers? Maybe that’s why Mayorkas now partners with Warren Christopher at O’Melveny. If you care about Los Angeles, you’ll be shaken by Anderson’s story.