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D.A. Gets Financial Help From Oksana's Lawyer

3/3/2011 11:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

L.A. County District Attorney Steve Cooley -- whose office will soon decide the fate of Oksana Grigorieva and Mel Gibson -- attended 2 fundraisers on his own behalf at the home of the lawyer who negotiated Oksana's $15 million settlement ... which is the core of the extortion investigation.

0301-steve_george_EX

TMZ has learned Eric George, a prominent Beverly Hills civil lawyer, hosted both campaign fundraisers last year, while the L.A. County Sheriff's Department was conducting its investigation. 

And documents reveal ... George contributed more than $8,000 to Cooley in 2010 ...  of that, George contributed $1,992 in August ... while the Sheriff's investigation of Oksana was going full bore ... we do know, however, George has had a long-standing friendship with Cooley and has made contributions to him in the past.

As TMZ first reported, George negotiated a $15 million package for Oksana during her mediation in May, 2010.  Law enforcement sources tell us ... Sheriff's investigators believe there's "strong evidence " that Oksana extorted Mel by threatening to release the explosive tapes unless she got the money.

TMZ broke the story that the D.A.'s office disagrees with Sheriff's investigators and has all but decided not to prosecute Oksana, but we're told Mel Gibson will be charged with misdemeanor domestic violence.

And we've learned ... Cooley has been involved -- holding a meeting in his office in December to review the case, though a D.A. spokesperson says no decisions were made during that meeting.
 
There is grousing among some people in law enforcement -- especially in the Sheriff's Department -- that Cooley should have completely removed himself from the decision-making process given the fundraisers and contributions from George.

George had no comment to TMZ, but a Sheriff's spokesperson has told us the only person under investigation in the extortion matter is Oksana.

Although sources tell us the die has already been cast, a D.A. spokesperson tells TMZ ... prosecutors will make a filing decision "very soon" and Cooley likely will not participate -- because he's about to go on a long-standing, out-of-town vacation for a week and a half.

The spokesperson would not say whether Cooley would make the filing decision if he's back in town when his deputies make their recommendation.


1388 COMMENTS

No Avatar
31.

Midwesterner    

@JLS

If there is as serious a conflict of interest here as there appears to be, Cooley should have others in his office take the evidence to a grand jury to determine whether or not the case should be prosecuted.

If law enforcement KNOW the evidence is there (and remember, they brought in experts to help them understand the law), their opinions are worth someone listening to them.

Do you really think there's no possibility this DA is corrupt? Come on.

1333 days ago
32.

Robertyes    

thanx for sharing to inform this story...!!!!!!!!1

Pure Acai Flush

Pure Acai Flush

1333 days ago
33.

Christy    

Oh, I think this has some stink written all over it...not just about a conviction or lack there of! That bitch is a crazy gold digger. Good post #18

Team Mel**

1333 days ago
34.

Karls    

9.
A vacation? Now? Grow some balls, you incompetent fool, and be accountable for your corrupt decisions! This whole process has been absolutely disgusting. The cops know the real deal.

Posted at 1:16 AM on Mar 3, 2011 by Cthrew

I AGREE!! CORUPTION....

1333 days ago
35.

yo    

Mel bought the Sherriff.....

but he could not buy the DA

1333 days ago
36.

Karls    

27.
Jesus Christ. This is really trying to make something out of nothing. LA County Sheriff's office needs to realize when they refer a case to the DA, it's the DA with the expertise in deciding whether or not he can actually GET A DAMN CONVICTION on it.

If you aren't an American, you would have no clue what I am referring to - nor could you comment.


Posted at 1:54 AM on Mar 3, 2011 by JLS

Chanel makeup counter at the department store is calling you!

1333 days ago
37.

Karls    

Great post Michael #18

1333 days ago
38.

yo    

Guess Mel doesn't own the whole area, even tho he says he owns Malibu.

Sung to the tune of "I shot the sherriff":

Mel shot the Sherriff

But he could not buy the deputy! (or the DA)

Too bad, so sad.

1333 days ago
39.

Fidel's niece    

Cooley is currently being sued
in Federal Court by the nations
largest Prosecutors Union,
for violating The First Amendment
of the US Constitution

Judge Ottis D. Wright II described
District Attorney Steve Cooley actions as
"STIKING AND RAMPANT".
Judge Wright issued a preliminary injunction
ordering Cooley to STOP DISCRIMINATING AND RETALIATING
AGAINST EMPLOYES ON THE BASIS OF THEIR UNION MEMBERSHIP.

Los Angeles Times reported:
Los Angeles County District Attorney
Steve Cooley waged an ILLEGAL ANTI-UNION CAMPAIGN,
IN WHICH HE AND HIS STAFF HARRASED AND UNFAIRLY DISCIPLINED UNION OFFICERS.


***Team Mel***

1333 days ago
40.

Karls    

Time for Mr Gibson and his team to talk! Expose this corruption!
If he doesnt and he gets charged, he will be paying that thing?(cant even say it's name) a whole lot more than $20,000 a month and opening the door for extortion to become the norm in Hollywood..

1333 days ago
41.

puddy    

27.
Jesus Christ. This is really trying to make something out of nothing. LA County Sheriff's office needs to realize when they refer a case to the DA, it's the DA with the expertise in deciding whether or not he can actually GET A DAMN CONVICTION on it.

If you aren't an American, you would have no clue what I am referring to - nor could you comment.


Posted at 1:54 AM on Mar 3, 2011 by JLS

Chanel makeup counter at the department store is calling you!

=========================================================

Or maybe the Sheriffs office realized that the DA had a major conflict and decided to do extra investigation and gathered a boat load of exculpatory evidence because they knew which way the DA's office would prosecute.

1333 days ago
42.

yo    

At least Mel supports Carlos Irwin Estevez!

Serial woman abusers unite!

1333 days ago
43.

Midwesterner    

You know, I am beginning to believe that the months of "extortion is a difficult crime to prove" that we endured from November until now were part of a strategy to brainwash the public.

"Why is extortion hard to prove?" we ask.

"Well, it's hard to prove because attorneys (who never do anything wrong) sometimes enter into negotiations that may look like extortion (but, of course, it isn't extortion, because THEY ARE ATTORNEYS). You see, prosecuting an extortionist may bring to light certain things these righteous attorneys have done that look like extortion to the ignorant masses . . . Well, can't you see why it's so difficult to prosecute an extortionist? Look at the effort it takes to protect the reputations of the lawyers involved!"

1333 days ago
44.

Fidel's niece    

"Show no fear in pursuing the criminal element,
but also be fearless in PURSUIT OF JUSTICE."

Steve Cooley's swearing-in ceremony speech in 2000.

FAIL!

***Team Mel***

1333 days ago
45.

shirleyholmes    


Part from MONEY - Pink Floyd

Money
So they say
Is the root of all evil today

http://www.lyricsfreak.com/p/pink+floyd/money_20108700.html

1333 days ago
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