District Attorney George Gascon launches criminal probe into Mayor Ed Lee's campaign contributions 

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  • AP file photo

A criminal investigation into Mayor Ed Lee’s campaign contributions is being launched by the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, according to a statement released Wednesday.

District Attorney George Gascón said the investigation was sparked by a letter from City Attorney Dennis Herrera — also Lee’s mayoral race rival — over what Herrera called “laundered campaign contributions.”

However, Gascón also said in the statement that the investigation itself doesn’t indicate wrongdoing on the part of Lee, who was blasted last week by mayoral race opponents after revelations by The Bay Citizen that an airport shuttle company likely pressured several employees to donate nearly $10,000 to his campaign.

“It is premature to form opinions or rush to judgment until an investigation is complete,” Gascón’s statement says.

Tony Winnicker, Lee’s campaign spokesman, said the money in question has since been returned.

dschreiber@sfexaminer.com

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