A judge on Friday delayed the sentencing of George Shirakawa Jr., the convicted and disgraced former Santa Clara County Supervisor president, saying a new charge that surfaced this week may violate his previous plea agreement. Damian Trujillo reports.
A judge on Friday delayed the sentencing of George Shirakawa Jr., the convicted and disgraced former Santa Clara County Supervisor president, saying a new charge that surfaced this week may violate his previous plea agreement.
Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Philip Pennypacker continued Shirakawa's new court date to July 19.
Shirakawa was originally supposed to be sentenced to one year in county jail after he pleaded guilty in March to 12 counts of corruption and theft of public funds.
Shirakawa, who is out of custody, did not speak Friday and has not spoken publicly since his arrest. His defense attorney asked that his case be dismissed.
MORE: The Complaint Against George Shirakawa Jr. (PDF)
But Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen on Wednesday charged Shirakawa with a completely new felony charge, impersonating the campaign of political adversary Magdalena Carrasco in 2010. That charge carries a maximum of three years in prison.
Shortly after he was charged - the first time - Shirakawa pleaded guilty to funneling $130,000 in campaign money in and out of his personal accounts over a five-year period, which mostly went to casinos in Las Vegas and Southern California. In a statement, Shirakawa apologized and stated he had a gambling addiction and suffered from depression.
Then, on Wednesday, Rosen detailed a politcal scam where he said Shirakawa impersonated Carrasco's campaign during a San Jose city council race. Rosen said Shirakawa - linked to a postage stamp on a campaign mailer with his DNA - defamed her in an illegal political hit piece depicting her standing with a North Vietnamese Communist flag. That flag is a huge offense to the Vietnamese who fled that regime and landed in San Jose.
At the time, Carrasco denied having anything to do with the mailer, and on Friday, she emailed a statement to NBC Bay Area stating: "East San Jose is not a Banana Republic. Our community deserves better than this and it is time to bring all those involved to justice."
At the news conference this week, Rosen said he would be asking Pennypacker to add more jail time to Shirakawa's sentence.