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Former San Diego Councilman Ralph Inzunza To Be Released From Prison


Former San Diego City Councilman Ralph Inzunza is scheduled to be released from prison today, according to the Bureau of Prisons.

Inzunza and two other city councilmen, Charles Lewis and Michael Zucchet, were indicted on federal charges on August 23, 2003.

The charges included extortion, wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit wire fraud for accepting illegal campaign contributions from strip club owner Michael Galardi, and Galardi's lobbyist Lance Malone, in exchange for trying to repeal the city's "no touch" laws.

Inzunza and Zucchet were convicted by a jury on July 18, 2005.

After multiple appeals over a six-year period, Inzunza was ordered to begin serving a 21-month prison sentence in January 2012 in a federal penitentiary in Atwater, Calif. He was transferred to a halfway house in April, according to UT San Diego.

Inzunza was elected to City Council District 8 in a special election in March 2001 and resigned in July 2005, along with Councilman Michael Zucchet, after being convicted on federal corruption charges.

Zucchet was convicted on nine charges, but a federal judge threw out seven of the charges and granted a new trial on one count of conspiracy and one count of wire fraud. The charges were eventually dropped.

The case against Lewis was dropped after his death in 2004.

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