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Ex-supervisor, aide charged with corruption

February 10, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
A former San Bernardino County supervisor and a top level aide to another supervisor were arrested Wednesday, accused of taking bribes in exchange for pushing a multi-million dollar lawsuit through the board.The State Attorney General's office claims former board Chairman William Postmus and James Erwin each took $100,000 from a developer called Colonies Partners that was suing the county for $102 million in 2005.

Erwin was chief of staff for supervisor Neil Derry.

"This is the most appalling corruption case in decades in the history of San Bernardino County and maybe California itself," said Attorney General Jerry Brown who was in San Bernardino when the arrests were announced.

The Board of Supervisors approved the settlement of that claim, although the county staff opposed it.

If they're convicted, Postmus could get 12 years in prison, and Erwin could get eight.

Postmus was already facing criminal charges of grand theft, drug possession and misappropriation of public funds.