Ed Jew’s attorney certain he can win

The lawyer defending Ed Jew against state charges that the suspended supervisor lied about his residency said Monday that, while he needed more time to work on the case before going to trial, he and his client remained “confident.”

One of four legal battles facing the embattled legislator, the state’s criminal trial, could begin in April.

Appearing in San Francisco Superior Court on Monday, Jew’s attorney Stuart Hanlon was granted a request to postpone until Feb. 5 the hearing to set the start date of the criminal trial. Hanlon, who took over the case after Jew’s former attorney Bill Fazio quit in October, said he needed more time to prepare a legal defense.

“[Jew] is confident. I’m confident.” Hanlon said after the brief court appearance. “But I need time to get ready. That’s where we are at.” Jew had been previously excused from attending. “It’s a complex case, with a lot of witnesses,” Hanlon said.

The district attorney has charged Jew with nine felony counts — ranging from perjury to voter fraud — for allegedly lying about where he lived on election-related documents and when voting. Prosecutors say Jew was living in Burlingame, not at the Sunset house as he claimed.

Hanlon also said a plea agreement is unlikely.

Jew is facing three other legal battles that he has also remained steadfast in fighting.

Jewis scheduled to appear in federal court Friday. A federal grand jury has indicted him on five felonies in connection with an alleged scheme to solicit cash bribes from local business owners in exchange for helping them obtain city permits.

Also on Friday, the Ethics Commission will meet to vote on whether it should proceed with a hearing on misconduct charges filed by Mayor Gavin Newsom against Jew in September that resulted in Jew’s suspension from the board.

Newsom charged Jew with official misconduct for violating the City Charter by not residing in the district he represents, as is required. The commission is to hold a hearing on the misconduct charges and issue a recommendation to the Board of Supervisors on whether Jew should be permanently removed from office. It would take at least nine votes by the board to remove Jew.

The city attorney has also filed a civil lawsuit against Jew to oust him from office, charging that he has violated The City’s residency requirements for holding office.

jsabatini@examiner.com

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