Haunted by an election-fixing scandal and an ongoing criminal case, former Compton councilman Isaac Galvan could face a hefty fine from the state’s political enforcement agency for multiple campaign finance violations, including using campaign funds personally.
California’s Fair Political Practices Commission will meet on July 21 to discuss a possible $240,000 fine against Galvan, according to its agenda.
Galvan, who was re-elected by one vote to a third term last year, was forced out of office in May when a judge invalidated the results because four ballots were illegally cast.
The City Council and its reelection committee failed to timely file biannual and pre-election campaign statements, failed to properly report committee activity in campaign statements, failed to timely file 24-hour dues reports, accepted money of $100 or more, illegal cash expenditures, in accordance with the FPPC agenda of campaign funds and failing to maintain required committee records.
The document also noted that Galvan used campaign funds for personal purposes.
Galvan controlled his reelection committee and served as treasurer, the FPPC said.
Albert Robles, Galvan’s attorney, told the Times Thursday he had not reviewed the commission’s agenda and could not comment on it.
Galvan, 35, was one of six people charged in August with conspiracy to voter fraud, according to Los Angeles County Attorneys.
Prosecutors allege Galvan conspired with Jace Dawson, one of his opponents in a primary for Galvan’s council seat in April 2021, to direct voters from outside the council district to cast ballots for Galvan in a June runoff against another candidate, they said in the complaint.
Galvan won the race 855 to 854, but a judge found that four votes were cast by people who did not live in the district.
The results were overturned and Andre Spicer, Galvan’s challenger, would replace him, Superior Court Judge Michelle Williams Court ruled in May.
Galvan was also charged with attempting to bribe an election official with concert tickets, according to the criminal complaint. According to LA County Chief Elections Officer Dean Logan, the officer immediately reported the attempt.
In addition to Galvan, Dawson, Kimberly Chaouch, Toni Sanae Morris, Barry Kirk Reed and Reginald Orlando Streeter have each been charged with two counts of conspiracy to voter fraud.
When ruling on Spicer’s election challenge in May, the court found that Chaouch, Morris, Streeter and a man named Jordan Farr Jefferson all voted in the Spicer-Galvan runoff, even though they didn’t live in the county. Chaouch, Morris, Streeter and Jefferson all listed Dawson’s address in Compton as their place of residence when they registered to vote in the race, according to the 10-page judgment.
For Galvan – who was first elected in 2013 and described himself as the city’s youngest and first Latino councilman – the verdict was the latest in a string of recent controversies.
Federal investigators served a search warrant at Galvan’s home in November 2020 as part of an investigation into marijuana licensing practices at Baldwin Park. The search came months after a former Baldwin Park police officer signed an affidavit that he had received complaints from three cannabis dispensary operators alleging “questionable business practices,” including paying up to $250,000 in cash in a brown paper bag to city officials.
In an interview with The Times after the warrant was issued, Galvan claimed it had nothing to do with his work in Compton but declined to discuss what, if any, cannabis business interests he had in Baldwin Park.
Galvan was also subpoenaed to testify in a grand jury trial that ultimately led prosecutors to pursue corruption and bribery charges against former Maywood Mayor Ramon Medina and nine others in 2021, a co-said officials familiar with the investigation told The Times last year. Galvan invoked his 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination during that proceeding and declined to answer questions, the official said.
An officer involved in both cases spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the matter openly.
In May, a councilor’s aide was arrested in connection with a murder in Downey. David Blake Jr., the son of Compton rapper and producer DJ Quik, was taken into custody after 33-year-old Julio Cardoza was shot in the chest at the 13200 block of Carfax Avenue after a fight on Wednesday.
Blake Jr. was listed as Galvan’s advisor, according to the city’s website.
https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-07-14/ex-compton-councilman-isaac-galvan-campaign-finance-fine-election-rigging-scandal Isaac Galvan faces fine for campaign finance violations