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The Los Angeles City Council voted to suspend Councilman Mark Ridley-Thomas amid federal allegations related to corruption charges.

On Wednesday, the council voted 11-3 on the motion presented by Council President Nury Martinez and Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, with only 10 votes required to pass.

Before the vote, Councilman Mike Bonin urged the council not to act and instead “vote no on considering this today and instead let this go to committee.”

“I want to argue that in this matter we are acting… too early, without consideration of our full range of options and with too much uncertainty before us,” Bonin said. “The allegations that have been made in the indictment are fresh and new. This council has the ability to take no action… and we have not spent time deliberating the full range of options.”

Bonin added that a suspension of Ridley-Thomas would leave the 10th district of Los Angeles without representation.

In a letter to the council on Tuesday, Ridley-Thomas stated his intention to “step back” from his council duties and had “every intent of fighting these outrageous allegations and expect to be fully exonerated.”

The allegations against Ridley-Thomas and former USC dean Marilyn Louise Flynn,  say the councilman received “substantial benefits from the university in exchange for Ridley-Thomas supporting county contracts and lucrative contract amendments with the university while he served on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

 

LA Weekly