Angel Stadium's $320M Sale on Hold as FBI Investigates Anaheim Mayor for Corruption

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVMay 17, 2022

ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 05: Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu rides in the 42nd Annual Orange County Black History Parade on February 05, 2022 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Daniel Knighton/Getty Images)
Daniel Knighton/Getty Images

The $320 million sale of Angel Stadium to the MLB franchise is on hold amid an FBI probe into alleged corruption by Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu.

“We will determine what this means for the stadium plan in the days ahead,” Anaheim spokesman Mike Lyster told the Los Angeles Times in a statement. 

Sidhu is accused of greasing the wheels of the sale in order to obtain a donation to his reelection campaign.

"We'll push them at least [to] have a million dollars," Sidhu said on an FBI-recorded phone call. "You know, for [an Angels official] to say 'no' is bad."

The city of Anaheim agreed to sell Angel Stadium and its surrounding parking lots to the team in 2019 for $320 million. It was later announced the Angels would only pay $150 million in cash as part of the deal.

Sidhu also worked to cut affordable housing in the area by Angel Stadium by 80 percent. 

FBI special agent Brian Adkins wrote that Sidhu "knowingly provided confidential information intended for the sole use of Anaheim and its negotiating team to the Angels … with the intent of concealing his actions from the negotiating team and the public, for the purpose of assisting the Angels and himself at the expense of the city of Anaheim."

Adkins also accused Sidhu of attempting to obstruct an investigation into the alleged impropriety. According to the affidavit obtained by the Times, Sidhu instructed an FBI witness to lie to a grand jury about discussions pertaining to the stadium sale.

City councilman Jose Moreno accused Angels owner Arte Moreno and Sidhu of engaging in an "illegal land sale" designed to enrich the owner and the franchise at the expense of the citizens of Anaheim.

Sidhu offered no comment on the story.