Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu Resigns Due to Ongoing FBI Investigation into Alleged Corruption in Baseball Stadium Sale

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The Mayor of Anaheim, California, Harry Sidhu, resigned on May 23 amid an ongoing federal investigation into a corruption case “which involved the $325 million sale of baseball team Angel Stadium,” according to a Reuters report. The Native American Republican is facing increasing pressure from City Council members to resign since the FBI investigation came to light last week. The investigation surrounds an allegation that the mayor requested $1 million in campaign donations from the Angels Stadium representative in exchange for official actions that would finalize the stadium sale, ABC 7 reported. Sidhu was not charged in the case.

An affidavit filed by the FBI in federal court on May 12 says that Sidhu “explores whether he shared privileged and confidential information with the Angels during the stadium sale negotiations, whether he actively concealed the same from a Grand Jury investigation, and whether he expected to receive campaign contributions.” result,” the Orange County Register reported.

“A fair and thorough investigation will prove that Mayor Harry Sidhu did not leak classified information in hopes of a later political campaign contribution.”

Sidhu’s lawyer, Paul Meyer, confirmed the resignation in an email to Reuters. But Reuters said it denied any wrongdoing. Meyer added that as mayor, Sidhu’s goal is to keep the Los Angeles Angels baseball team in Anaheim. According to Reuters, Meyer said, “A fair and thorough investigation will prove that Mayor Harry Sidhu did not leak classified information in hopes of a later political campaign contribution.” “His unwavering goal from the beginning was to keep the Angels in Anaheim so that this vibrant social and economic relationship could continue.”

Calls for Sidhu’s resignation gained momentum the previous evening on May 18, when Councilor Avelino Valencia did not attend a board meeting where the mayor’s resignation was made public, according to the Orange County Register report.

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Sale of the stadium was also halted for 60 days by the Orange County Supreme Court judge in response to the state’s attorney general’s request, which made the search warrant publicly targeting Sidhu, the Los Angeles Times reported. “The state attorney general’s filing suggested that disclosures in the warrant could render the agreement void, and that new and evolving information would likely emerge regarding potential violations of state and federal law,” the report said.

Sidhu, who was elected mayor in 2018, will be re-elected in November.