Josh Dulaney, Staff Writer
Posted: 09/30/2011 06:16:21 PM PDT
The airport developer at the center of a federal investigation said Friday he has no intention of stepping down.
“That’s not my decision, I serve at the pleasure of the shareholders of the company,” said Scot Spencer, who manages several businesses at San Bernardino International Airport.
Federal agents raided the airport on Sept. 21, filling a U-Haul truck with computers, cell phones and other records.
Investigators are looking into possible mail and wire fraud, bribery, conspiracy and money laundering, and theft and fraud related to federal funds.
In what Spencer said was his first media interview since the FBI raid, he declined to comment on the investigation.
“It’s really inappropriate for me to comment…of course, we’ll cooperate in whatever way we can,” Spencer said.
He said he was in New York on Friday and on the day of the FBI raid, supporting his father through a surgery.
Spencer said earlier this week he was at the airport conducting business, and will be back to work on Monday.
He will make himself available to officials, and intends to be at the next meeting of the San Bernardino International Airport Authority and Inland Valley Development Agency boards.
Authorities are attempting to document a relationship between Spencer, former Executive Airport Director Donald L. Rogers, airport Aviation Director Bill Ingraham, Assistant Airport Director Mike Burrows, former airport director Thomas “T. Milford” Harrison, South Carolina-based aircraft materials company Tiger Enterprises and Trading, and San Bernardino Mayor Pat Morris, who presides over the airport boards responsible for overseeing airport redevelopment.
Since the raid, Rogers has resigned as executive director of the airport, and the boards responsible for redeveloping SBIA have held one emergency meeting and one regularly scheduled meeting, addressing the FBI investigation in each session.
Supervisor Josie Gonzales, who is a member of the SBIAA board and who co-chairs the IVDA board, said it was good that Spencer finally made a public statement regarding his whereabouts.
“The entire intent is to get through this very difficult situation with the least amount of obstacles,” she said.
Gonzales wouldn’t call for Spencer to leave the airport, saying the airport boards “cannot go anywhere near that direction until there is an investigation.”
The airport, which is funded through local and federal tax dollars, this week began the process of looking into Spencer’s contracts, by sending out requests for proposals from law firms who could conduct the research to see if the contracts had been violated in any way.
“We’re being very careful because this situation demands a lot of scrutiny, transparency, and the total elimination of conflicts,” Gonzales said.
At the same time, she said it is important for Spencer to be accountable.
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