Former L.A. City Councilman Mitch Englander begins prison sentence for corruption

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Los Angeles City Councilman Mitchell Englander speaks during an April 2018 council meeting. (Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles City Councilman Mitchell Englander speaks during an April 2018 council meeting. (Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Former Los Angeles City Councilman Mitchell Englander has begun serving a federal prison sentence for corruption, it was reported Wednesday.

Prison records show that Englander is serving a 14-month sentence at the U.S. penitentiary in Tucson, Arizona. Scott Taylor, a spokesman for the Federal Bureau of Prisons, said Englander is expected to be released next May 28, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Taylor wouldn’t discuss the reason for the projected release date, but he said prison sentences can be reduced for various reasons, including good conduct, the Times said.

Englander, who served on the City Council from 2011 to 2018, was ordered to report to prison this week. He was sentenced in January for lying to federal investigators about his dealings with a businessman who provided him $15,000 in secret cash payments during a night out in Las Vegas.

Englander, 50, was the first person to be sentenced in a wide-ranging federal investigation into corruption at Los Angeles City Hall. He pleaded guilty last year to scheming to falsify material facts, a felony.

As part of his plea deal, Englander admitted lying to prosecutors and FBI agents during three interviews about his interactions with the unnamed businessman.

After the Vegas trip, the businessman became a government informant and secretly recorded conversations with the former councilman.

Federal charges also have been filed against former City Councilman Jose Huizar, former deputy mayor Raymond Chan and several others. Huizar and Chan have pleaded not guilty.

Mayor Eric Garcetti said he felt that justice had been served, the Times said.

“If you break the law, it doesn’t matter who you are or what your title is, be prepared to pay the price,” he said.

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