Mexican charged in San Diego campaign finance case
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- A Mexican businessman has been charged with illegally funneling money to support San Diego politicians in a widening campaign finance scandal.
Jose Susmo Azano pleaded not guilty Thursday in San Diego to being a foreign national who provided campaign contributions.
Prosecutors contend that the 48-year-old Azano and several other people donated to independent committees backing candidates for mayor and Congress in 2012 and 2013.
Charges filed last month don't describe a suspected motive but a federal prosecutor has said at least one defendant wanted to develop property in San Diego and turn its downtown waterfront into "Miami West."