S.F. Supervisor Ed Jew plans to fight to keep seat

Supervisor Ed Jew plans to file a restraining order against The City if misconduct charges that stem from an alleged bribery scheme are filed, his lawyer said Sunday.

Steven Gruel, an attorney for the embattled District 4 supervisor, said he would likely seek a restraining order from a state or federal court within 24 hours of the misconduct charges being filed. The restraining order would be an attempt to prevent Jew’s removal from his seat on the Board of Supervisors.

“Quite frankly, that would probably be the next step” if misconduct charges were filed, Gruel said. “Within 24 hours, I think we would be prepared to file something.”

Mayor Gavin Newsom is reviewing possible misconduct charges against Jew, which, if filed, would immediately remove Jew from his seat, after federal charges were filed last week against the supervisor in connection with an alleged scheme to bribe local business owners.

Jew pled not guilty Friday to a federal mail-fraud charge that alleges he threatened to create city-permit problems for Chinese immigrant owners of Quickly tapioca-drink shops in The City unless they gave him $80,000 in cash. Jew was released on a $1 million bond under conditions that he does not travel or attempt to intimidate potential witnesses.

The supervisor is now the target of two criminal cases. The other case is scheduledto begin Oct. 26, in which he is charged by the district attorney on nine felony counts for allegedly lying about where he lived in order to run for office last year. A preliminary hearing in the federal case has been scheduled for Oct. 11.

The Sunset district supervisor has denied all charges and continues to meet with constituents. He has ignored requests to resign from the mayor and his board colleagues.

Sources close to City Hall have said Newsom has been working with City Attorney Dennis Herrera over the weekend to draft official misconduct charges against the supervisor that would immediately remove him from office. Newsom on Friday visited Jew in his Sunset district home and asked him to resign.

Gruel said Sunday that Jew will not resign from his post and that he requested a meeting with Newsom for today. Gruel said misconduct charges would put the situation in “stormy waters.”

“I do know the supervisor will fight this. He has done nothing wrong. To deprive him and his constituents of his position without due process would be quite frankly setting The City up for a huge lawsuit” if Jew is acquitted of the state and federal charges, Gruel said.

Jew would be the first supervisor in The City’s history to face misconduct charges. Newsom would be required to immediately appoint a replacement for Jew to represent District 4 on the Board of Supervisors.

arocha@examiner.com

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