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Moore Loses Bid To Undo Misdemeanor Plea Deal

An aide to former Chula Vista Mayor Steve Padilla lost a bid Tuesday to vacate his misdemeanor conviction for providing false and misleading testimony to a grand jury.

Jason Moore claimed he would never have pleaded guilty to the charge had he known the investigation was launched after District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis tried to get Padilla to appoint her own aide to a vacant City Council seat.

In 2007, Moore was caught spying on his boss's rival during work hours. The District Attorney's Office filed perjury charges against Moore, claiming he lied on a form requesting time off.

Moore subsequently pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of providing false and misleading testimony to a grand jury.

KPBS reported in April that Dumanis called Padilla in 2006, just weeks after she started investigating Chula Vista officials. Padilla said Dumanis asked him to appoint one of her aides, Jesse Navarro, to a vacant Chula Vista City Council seat, but he refused.

If Dumanis made the call and later started an investigation that included subpoenaing Moore to the grand jury, Moore should have known about it, said his attorney, Knut Johnson.

In his ruling Tuesday, San Diego Superior Court Judge Louis Hanoian said Dumanis making a call to then-Mayor Padilla asking for his support for Navarro's appointment to the City Council is not a fact that would have prevented the rendition of judgment in Moore's case.

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