A state commission on Friday approved $218,000 in fines against Mattel Inc., a former executive for the El Segundo-based toy maker and a political consultant, ending an investigation into political money-laundering.
The state Fair Political Practices Commission voted unanimously to fine Mattel $72,000 for failing to properly disclose contributions. The panel fined a former Mattel senior vice president, Fermin Cuza, $88,000 for laundering Mattel funds in political contributions. Political consultant Alan Schwartz was fined $58,000 for aiding and abetting Cuza in the scheme.
"Political money-laundering is among the most egregious violations of campaign finance laws because you are deliberately flouting the disclosure rules and intentionally not disclosing where contributions come from," said the commission chairwoman, Karen Getman.
When combined with fines levied by federal and Los Angeles ethics officials, Mattel, Cuza and Schwartz will pay a total of $931,000.