LA Sheriff's Candidate Paul Tanaka Under Federal Investigation - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

LA Sheriff's Candidate Paul Tanaka Under Federal Investigation

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Los Angeles, CA -

It could be a big shake up in the race for LA County sheriff.

A leading candidate, the former second-in-command at the LA County sheriffs department, former Under-sheriff Paul Tanaka revealed in federal court that he is the subject of a federal obstruction of justice investigation.

Tanaka was called to testify in the trial of Deputy James Sexton the first of 20 Sheriff's officials to stand trial on charges they conspired to hide an inmate turned FBI informant. The informant had been giving federal agents information about abuse and corruption at the men's Central Jail. Prosecutors say deputies schemed to make the informant vanish by moving him within the jail and changing his name several times. The big question: who gave the orders?

Tanaka testified he found out about the department's efforts to hide the informant. He said he didn't make the order but didn't disagree, explaining that the department needed to protect the informant and keep him safe. Tanaka has not been indicted. Three other candidates issued statements calling on Tanaka to bow out of the race. The primary election is on June 3. There is no evidence at this point Tanaka will drop out.

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