By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
By Charles Lam
"This is a motion [by Sanders] that cries out for a hearing," Goethals stated. He scheduled a Feb. 28 evidentiary session and promises to explore the corruption allegations with sworn testimony possibly for "a week or two." That plan seemed to please Sanders. On the other side of the courtroom, Wagner didn't look so thrilled.
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HERE COMES THE JUDGE
Earlier this month, the Irvine City Council hired retired Superior Court Judge Nancy Wieben Stock to oversee the issuance of subpoenas for city contractors that took millions of dollars in no-bid contracts at the Orange County Great Park but have refused unconditional cooperation with an audit that has already uncovered massive irregularities.
The public-accountability move, approved unanimously by the council's present Republican majority, was—not surprisingly—objected to by Larry Agran and Beth Krom, the council's Democrats who for 12 years helped to sabotage the park project by funneling as much as $174,000 per month in funds to their own campaign operatives.
A scathing, preliminary audit report issued in January by the well-respected financial forensics team at Hagen, Streiff, Newton & Oshiro Accountants recommended the government contractors should be forced to cooperate so that investigators can follow the eyebrow-raising money trail.
Wieben Stock enjoyed a 24-year career as a high-ranking superior court judge and now works as a private mediator at JAMS Orange Resolution Center. During her court tenure, she handled complex litigation cases and served as presiding judge. Perhaps most worrisome to Agran and Krom is that she's also a former federal prosecutor known to not appreciate unsavory conduct.