September 29, 2022

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Previous LADWP cybersecurity chief will get 4 a long time in jail

A federal decide on Tuesday sentenced the former official in cost of cybersecurity at the Los Angeles Office of Water and Electric power to four several years in prison for lying to federal authorities.

David Alexander, 54, is the next metropolis official to be sentenced in the federal corruption probe of the DWP and the city attorney’s office environment. DWP officials and attorneys doing the job for the metropolis took portion in several crimes, which include aiding and abetting extortion and bribery, in accordance to prosecutors.

David Wright, the former DWP normal supervisor, was sentenced in April to 6 years in jail for bribery.

U.S. District Judge Stanley Blumenfeld Jr. instructed the court docket Tuesday that Alexander lied and lined up his actions at the utility “with wonderful simplicity.”

“He was section and parcel of the culture of corruption at the DWP,” Blumenfeld mentioned.

Alexander, who was also requested by Blumenfeld to shell out a $50,000 fantastic, declined to comment to The Times following his sentencing.

Prosecutors said Alexander helped a firm connected with Paul Paradis, a New York attorney who also has been implicated in the sprawling corruption scheme, secure do the job at the utility. Later, Alexander sought out a work for himself with Paradis’ firm as he prepared to leave the DWP, prosecutors explained.

Alexander served as the DWP’s main info protection officer from May 2017 to February 2019, then as cyber risk officer till August 2019.

Prosecutors said he utilized his placement at the Southern California General public Energy Authority, a consortium of utilities, together with the DWP, to rig the bidding approach in favor of a agreement for Paradis’ organization.

Alexander was the vice chair of the SCPPA cybersecurity performing team and a member of the scoring committee. He each influenced the composition of the scoring committee and shared his scores with other users to persuade them to amount Paradis’ enterprise favorably. In April 2019, the enterprise was awarded a $17-million contract.

The DWP board later on sought to rebid the agreement through the utility. Alexander yet again undertook attempts to affect other members of the evaluation committee to level Paradis’ organization favorably. He sent Paradis a textual content about his options to get the deal by way of, creating, “I know my job” with a laughing-crying emoji, prosecutors mentioned.

In mid-July 2019, Alexander “proactively solicited employment” with the cybersecurity organization. He sought from Paradis an govt-degree income, signal-on bonus and extra economical incentives to make up for the “early retirement penalty” he confronted for leaving the DWP, prosecutors claimed.

By that place, Paradis was covertly working with the FBI and recording his conversations with Alexander, according to transcripts in the court docket submitting.

The FBI raided the DWP on July 22, 2019. Alexander gave a voluntary job interview to the FBI two times later in which he lied to investigators about his discussions and arrangement with Paradis. Through a second interview two times later on, he lied once more and falsely said that he had declined any career possibilities with Paradis’ organization, prosecutors stated.

At Tuesday’s sentencing, Alexander’s legal professional Nina Marino highlighted the timeline laid out by prosecutors in a bid to solid question on her client’s motivations. Just before July 2019, Alexander’s “self-curiosity was not the motivating variable,” Marino told the decide. Blumenfeld turned down that argument, saying the notion that Alexander was carrying out everything other “than placing the table” was not plausible.

Blumenfeld noted that the former DWP official was entrusted with safeguarding stability at the utility.

“The degree of betrayal of that rely on is nearly unfathomable,” he stated.