Plea deal expected in Ed Jew fraud case


"Absolutely, he'll be going to prison," said attorney Stuart Hanlon, following a hearing on the case in San Francisco Superior Court this morning.

Jew is scheduled to appear in superior court -- where he is facing charges of perjury, election code violations, voter fraud and providing false documents for allegedly lying about his residence while running for supervisor in 2006, on Nov. 18.

Hanlon said Jew is currently in negotiations with the San Francisco District Attorney's Office and anticipates a plea deal will be reached.

"We expect on the 18th to resolve this case," Hanlon said.

Jew, 48, pleaded guilty on Oct. 10 to federal charges of extortion, mail fraud and soliciting a $40,000 bribe from representatives of San Francisco tapioca drink shops. He is scheduled to be sentenced on those charges on Feb. 13.

Though the three counts carry a possible maximum sentence of 50 years in prison, Hanlon said today Jew will likely serve between 18 months and six years, adding that he hopes Jew's state sentence will be served concurrently with the federal sentence.

Jew, the owner of a Chinatown flower shop, was elected in November 2006 to represent the city's Sunset District and took office the following month.

The district attorney's office filed the election fraud charges in June 2007, alleging Jew's main residence was in Burlingame. Mayor Gavin Newsom suspended Jew from office in September 2007, and Jew resigned in January.

Hanlon said Jew might have avoided jail altogether if he had resigned immediately after being charged, but received "some bad advice" and made mistakes, Hanlon said.

Hanlon declined today to specifically address speculation that Jew may be preparing to publicly name other politicians with whom Jew was connected who may have engaged in similar extortive behavior.

Hanlon said Jew now wants to take responsibility for his actions and take care of his family, "and that doesn't necessarily mean blaming others," he said.

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