Prosecutors Investigating Complaint of Alleged Straw Donors in Alex Villanueva’s Campaign for L.A. County Sheriff

The Los Angeles County district attorney’s office is reviewing a complaint that straw donors contributed to the campaign of Los Angeles County sheriff’s candidate Alex Villanueva.

Retired sheriff's Lt. Alex Villanueva, left, debates Sheriff Jim McDonnell on July 23, 2018. (Credit: Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

Retired sheriff’s Lt. Alex Villanueva, left, debates Sheriff Jim McDonnell on July 23, 2018. (Credit: Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

The office’s public integrity division, which investigates official corruption, is handling the inquiry, according to spokesman Greg Risling.

“The complaint pertains to a donor, not Villanueva,” Risling said in a statement. “When our office receives a complaint, our prosecutors review the allegation to determine whether the allegation, if true, would constitute a crime and whether there is evidence to support it. If these conditions are met, our office will investigate.”

For several weeks, close observers of the hotly contested sheriff’s election have zoomed in on a series of donations to Villanueva’s campaign from employees of a company owned by a supporter of Villanueva’s. Risling did not confirm that those donations are the subject of the review.

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