A California city council member has been accused of multiple felony charges in connection with the 2020 election.
Shakir Khan of Lodi was arrested Thursday, according to CBS.
According to an Instagram post from the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office, Khan is charged with “Causing/Procuring/Allowing false voter registration of self/another person; Submission of fraudulent registration to Secretary of State; Submission of fraudulent Candidacy petition; Aiding/Abetting the commission of fraud at any election; Subscription of fictitious names to nomination petitions; False nomination/declaration of candidacy; Fraudulently casting votes and Procuring/assisting/counseling/advising another not qualified to vote.”
Khan was already facing charges from 2021 of illegal gambling, money laundering, tax evasion, and unemployment claim fraud.
Sheriff’s officials allege that during a 2020 search warrant of Khan’s home, they located 41 mail-in ballots and after further investigating they located about 70 names that were registered to Khan’s home, his email or phone number. https://t.co/5Cq426cX9A
— Mrs_Calabash (@Mrs__Calabash) February 18, 2023
“Our investigation uncovered that councilman Shakir Khan has attempted to undermine, manipulate and violate one of our most fundamental rights here in our country, and that is the right to free and fair elections,” San Joaquin County Sheriff Pat Withrow said, according to KTXL-TV.
“It appears to councilman Shakir Khan has targeted members of his own community, our Pakistani community in the north county. And we are doing everything we can to work with them to make sure that they are protected,” he said.
“When we saw this, we thought that something was off here and we didn’t know we had a crime at this particular point because there was a recent change in election law and people can turn in ballots on behalf of another,” Capt. Art Harty of the sheriff’s office said.
During a Thursday press conference, the sheriff’s office alleged there were 23 names registered to vote using Khan’s address as theirs. Deputies said 47 other people allegedly used Khan’s email and phone number, even though they were listed as living at other addresses.
Deputies said there were signature verification issues on the petitions Khan used to get on the ballot, saying signatures filed on the petitions did not match those on file with the state Department of Motor Vehicles.
Deputies also allege they were told by some individuals that Khan signed their ballots and that some people who do not even live in the U.S. voted for Khan.
Deputies allege Khan posted a social media video telling those who might be interviewed to “say that you filled out your ballot if you are questioned.”
Although Lodi Mayor Mikey Hothi has said he secured Khan’s signature to a resignation letter while Khan was in jail, Khan, after his release, said he is not stepping down.
“I did not resign my city council seat,” Khan told KCRA-TV. “I will continue to serve the people that I love in my district and my community. My family and myself, we are going through some hard time right now and we are looking forward to fighting these charges,” Khan said.
Allen Sawyer, Khan’s attorney said if Lodi “attempts to enforce what I think is a bogus resignation, they’re gonna enter into significant federal litigation.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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