Embattled in a scandalous civil dispute in 2008, wealthy, Republican, socialite Dick Marconi wanted Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas, a fellow Republican, to enter the battle on his side by converting the matter into a criminal case against his opposition.
|Potential police lineup: What is Mayor Miguel Pulido in the middle of now? |
Marconi and his wife Priscilla contributed $3,200, then-the maximum campaign contribution, to Rackauckas on June 4, 2008, and seven days later government agents swung into action in the year-old dispute that had previously involved negotiating lawyers.
Working behind the scenes with Rackauckas' staff, Newport Beach police detectives arrested Irvine-based civil attorney Jim Toledano, former chairman of the Orange County Democratic Party, and his client, then-fitness trainer Michael Roberts, on extortion charges.
The move effectively gave the GOP power couple a victory in the dispute and left a shocked Toledano and Roberts facing felony counts--charges so weak and suspicious prosecutors have worked to delay a trial even to this day, more than four years later.
At the heart of the DA's case is the laughably absurd assertion made by prosecutor Rebecca Olivieri to fooled grand jurors: civil lawyers never seek to resolve disputes by requesting monetary damages for their clients prior to the filing of lawsuits.
Now comes Adam Elmahrek's Sept. 16 Voice of OC article revealing that one of Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido's closest pals sent money to the DA this year while prosecutors ponder indicting Pulido on corruption charges. More »