Guess who is on district attorney Bonnie Dumanis's endorsement list for her current election campaign? Aaron Feldman, head of Sunroad Enterprises, which seemingly can't stay out of trouble. There is now an investigation of Sunroad's $100,000 payment when it was seeking an easement. Former mayor Bob Filner is on the hot seat on that one. Sunroad's Tom Story, a former top city official, was involved in the passing of the money on behalf of Sunroad.
Both Filner and Dumanis reportedly received laundered money from Mexico in the 2012 election. Dumanis has admitted meeting the alleged donor, Azano Matsura, in his Coronado home. Donations from foreigners are not permitted in U.S. elections.
The controversy brings to mind Dumanis's relationship with Feldman in 2007 during the term of former city attorney Mike Aguirre. Sunroad had constructed a building that both the state and Federal Aviation Administration said was too high for safety, since it was near Montgomery Field. Feldman had put on fundraisers and raised a bundle for former mayor Jerry Sanders, who, of course, was fighting to help his donor.
Aguirre, agreeing with the state and the U.S. government, wanted something done about the building. The Union-Tribune's editorial page — along with one reporter — were trying to make heroes of Sanders, Story, and Feldman, and a devil of Aguirre for wanting to enforce the law.
Believing that Story had contacted his former employees at the city illegally, Aguirre got San Diego superior court judge George "Woody" Clarke to approve a search warrant of Sunroad. But police chief William Lansdowne refused to let his officers do the search.
"Lansdowne leaked the search warrant to Sanders, who got Bonnie [Dumanis] to kill it," recalls Aguirre. "The Sunroad case at Montgomery Field provides a prototype case explaining why businesses from Mexico might want pull with the San Diego [district attorney]."
As I have said previously, this money-laundering case is in its inchoate stages, and Dumanis deserves the right to defend herself.