By Joe Nelson
joe.nelson@ inlandnewspapers.com @SBCountyNow on Twitter
Posted: 03/20/2013 07:32:04 PM PDT
A San Bernardino Superior Court judge on Wednesday dismissed former San Bernardino County Supervisor Neil Derry’s misdemeanor conviction for failing to report a $5,000 campaign contribution in 2007.
Derry’s attorney, Rajan Maline, filed a motion with the court requesting early termination of Derry’s probation and a dismissal of his conviction.
Despite opposition from state Deputy Attorney General Stephanie Chow, Judge J. David Mazurek granted the request.
“Mr. Derry was plenty deserving of it,” Maline said Wednesday. “He did everything he was supposed to do and the judge granted it on that basis. ”
The state Attorney General’s Office charged Derry in April 2011 with perjury and filing false documents, both felonies, and failing to report a campaign contribution, a misdemeanor. Under a plea bargain, Derry pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor in exchange for the two felonies being dropped. He also paid roughly $15,000 in fines, in total, to both the court and the state Fair Political Practices Commission.
The charges arose during an expansive investigation into county corruption that led to criminal charges against several former county officials in scandals involving the Assessor’s Office and a $102 million legal settlement between the county and a Rancho Cucamonga developer in November 2006.
Former county Assessor Bill Postmus, the central figure in both scandals and who was also the former chairman of the county Board of Supervisors, agreed to cooperate with prosecutors in exchange for leniency. He told prosecutors Derry funneled a $5,000 campaign contribution from Highland developer Arnold Stubblefield through Postmus’ political action committee, Inland Empire PAC.
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