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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA / A news summary

State Asked to Probe Claims Against Councilwoman

August 03, 2000

FULLERTON — Orange County prosecutors asked the state attorney general's office Wednesday to investigate claims that a longtime Fullerton City Council member has violated election rules by living outside the city.

The request followed a complaint filed last week with Fullerton city officials alleging that Councilwoman Julie Sa lives in an upscale Chino Hills home but rents an apartment in Fullerton so she can keep her council seat, authorities said.

Both the Fullerton city attorney and the Orange County district attorney's office have declared a conflict of interest. State investigators have yet to receive the request, an attorney general's office spokesman said.

Sa, 49, won recognition eight years ago as the first Korean American woman in Orange County to win a City Council seat. But if the claim that she does not live in the city holds up, city officials said, it could cost her the seat and prevent her from running for reelection in November.

Sa could not be reached for comment but lists her address with the city as an apartment on West Commonwealth Avenue. The building, a 225-unit complex called the Ambassador Inn, once operated as a motel, according to managers.

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