Former Lodi Councilman can challenge appointment of his successor

Khan, who faces charges of voter fraud, argues that he was coerced by the city into resigning.

Former Lodi City Councilman Shakir Khan has been given the green light from the California Attorney General’s office to challenge the appointment of his successor. 

The Attorney General’s Office released its opinion on Thursday regarding how the City Council replaced Khan. 


The backstory: Khan was arrested in February on 14 felony counts of voter fraud charges stemming from when he was elected in 2020. 

  • He was accused of false voter registration, submission of fraudulent candidacy petition, aiding and abetting the commission of fraud, subscription of fictitious names to nomination petitions, fraudulently casting votes and other charges. 
  • He pleaded not guilty to the charges last month.
  • Khan signed a letter of resignation while in jail when visited by Lodi Mayor Mikey Hothi, but he later argued that he was coerced into signing it. 

The big picture: The Attorney General’s Office ruled that there are substantial issues as to whether the Lodi City Council lawfully declared Khan’s seat to be vacant and whether the council lawfully appointed Ramon Yepez to fill it. 

  • The ruling stated that the state requires resignations to be in writing and made to the city clerk, and Khan had called Hothi 15 minutes after signing the letter saying that he did not authorize the mayor or anyone else to issue any statement on his behalf. 
  • If there was no valid resignation, then there could be no valid appointment, according to the ruling. 

The ruling: “It is undisputed that the mayor told Khan it was ‘too late’ to withdraw his resignation, and that the media had already been informed and were on their way to interview the mayor in front of the jail,” the ruling states. “The mayor then texted the city clerk an image of the signed document, and after his media engagements, drove to the Lodi City Hall and delivered the document in person to the city clerk, who stamped it as ‘received’ that same day.”

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