Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu resigned Monday amid an FBI investigation into allegations that he sought to exchange insider information about the sale of Angel Stadium for campaign donations. File Photo by Lori Shepler/UPI | License Photo
May 23 (UPI) -- The mayor of Anaheim, Calif., announced his resignation Monday amid allegations he sought to exchange insider information about the sale of Angel Stadium for campaign donations.
The city confirmed Monday that it had received a resignation letter from Mayor Harry Sidhu, a Republican, adding that it would go into effect on Tuesday.
"In order to continue to act in the best interests of Anaheim and allow this great city to move forward without distraction, Harry Sidhu has resigned from his post as mayor effective May 24, 2022," Sidhu's lawyer, Paul Meyer, said in a statement. "Meeting the needs of the community has been and will always be Harry Sidhu's top priority."
Sidhu has not been charged with a crime but the FBI said it has a secret telephone recording in which Sidhu can be heard soliciting a payment of $1 million to finalize a deal to sell Angel Stadium to Los Angeles Angels owner Arte Moreno's development company.
He was also accused of using an intermediary to pass confidential information about the discussions to an Angels representative.
Meyer said that Sidhu "never asked for a political campaign contribution that was linked in any way to the negotiation process," adding that a "fair and thorough investigation" would exonerate the mayor.
"His unwavering goal from the start has been to keep the Angels in Anaheim, so that this vibrant social and economic relationship will continue," Meyer said.
Last week, Anaheim City Council members called on Sidhu to resign amid the probe.
"We need a fresh start, and we need it now, and that starts with the mayor's resignation, and I hope that the mayor will act in the best interest of Anaheim," Anaheim Mayor Pro Tem Trevor O'Neil said.
The city council has 60 days to appoint a replacement. An election is also scheduled for the position in November.