OCR: Jaramillo cooperates with federal investigation

Ex-sheriff’s assistant and one time friend of Mike Carona secretly pleaded guilty in March to two federal charges.
The Orange County Register

SANTA ANA Former assistant sheriff George Jaramillo secretly pleaded guilty in March to federal tax evasion and mail fraud, and agreed to cooperate in a growing federal investigation of corruption in the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, according to a plea agreement.

Jaramillo, who was once considered a front-runner to succeed Orange County Sheriff Mike Carona, agreed to cooperate fully with investigations underway by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the FBI and the IRS, according to the deal he signed in March.

The plea agreement states that Jaramillo could get as much as 23 years in prison and a fine of $350,000 if sentenced to the maximum. Jaramillo is currently in jail serving a sentence on county charges.

But the United States Attorney’s Office, which has been investigating the sheriff’s department since at least 2004, told Jaramillo that it would recommend a sentence “at the low end of applicable sentencing guidelines” if he tells the truth, according to the plea agreement.

“He has been cooperating with federal authorities, he is cooperating and he will continue to cooperate,” said Robert Corrado, Jaramillo’s attorney. “I don’t expect him to do any more time in jail.”  READ MORE