SACRAMENTO — California’s Department of Justice said today that it charged Richard Fazlollahi, Cal/OSHA’s Santa Ana district manager, with bribery.
The Santa Ana office handles all of the state's adult entertainment cases involving violations of workplace safety regulations, including those that involve the exposure of bloodborne pathogens during porn shoots.
Fazlollahi is a longtime Cal/OSHA employee who was alleged to have requested, and agreed to receive, a bribe from a construction company in exchange for reducing penalties the company was facing for workplace safety violations, state Attorney General Xavier Becerra said today.
According to the complaint, after the construction company exercised its right to challenge citations, the defendant used an informal conference as an opportunity to solicit concrete work for his personal residence in exchange for a reduction in citations.
Operating under the assumption that the concrete work would be completed, Fazlollahi then represented Cal/OSHA at an administrative hearing where he reduced the citations in exactly the manner he had promised the company he would.
Becerra said: “Accepting bribes is illegal and corrupt. The Department of Justice stands vigilant and will vigorously prosecute abuse and corruption at every opportunity."
The case will be prosecuted by the Attorney General's Financial Fraud and Special Prosecution Section, Becerra said.
Industry attorney Karen Tynan told XBIZ today that the news about the district manager is unnerving and possibly could lead to further prosecutorial inquiries involving others.
"I can’t help but be concerned that the Santa Ana office is the location that handled the adult film industry complaints and investigations over the last five or so years," Tynan said. "I’m interested to see if this is a 'one off' or part of the office operation."