Alarcon and his wife will be retried on perjury and voter fraud charges, prosecutors say
Former Los Angeles City Councilman Richard Alarcon and his wife, Flora, will be retried on perjury and voter fraud charges in a case that saw their convictions overturned in January, prosecutors announced Friday.
The Alarcons are due back in court June 24 for a pretrial conference, the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office said.
In 2014, a jury found them guilty of lying about where they lived so that Richard Alarcon could run for a council seat. The state 2nd District Court of Appeal threw out the convictions, saying the trial judge had given an improper jury instruction.
Richard Alarcon is now a candidate for Congress, challenging Rep. Tony Cardenas (D-Los Angeles), who represents much of the east San Fernando Valley.
On Friday, Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey’s office said in a statement, “We remain confident that the evidence shows beyond a reasonable doubt that Richard and Flora Alarcon violated the law.”
An attorney for Richard Alarcon, Richard Lasting, said he will file a motion to have the case dismissed. He noted that the Alarcons were acquitted of 14 other charges.
“It is not in the interest of justice to devote further court time and resources to retry what’s left of this case,” Lasting said.
Lasting said he hoped the prosecutors’ decision would not affect his client’s bid for Congress. “There is a presumption of innocence,” the attorney added.
Prosecutors said Richard Alarcon faces one felony count of perjury on a declaration to run for office and three felony counts of fraudulent voting. Flora Alarcon faces one felony count of perjury and two counts of fraudulent voting.
The Alarcons were accused of falsely claiming they lived in Panorama City, in the district Alarcon ran to represent, while actually residing five miles away in Sun Valley, outside that district.
During the monthlong trial, defense attorneys told the jury the Alarcons were staying in Sun Valley while renovating the Panorama City home and planned to return to it once the work was finished.
Start your day right
Sign up for Essential California for news, features and recommendations from the L.A. Times and beyond in your inbox six days a week.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.