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Whittier Daily News Reporter Sides With Corrupt Politicians



Staff Report

In what looks to be another obvious attempt to discredit community newspapers, Whittier Daily News reporter Mike Sprague, in an email sent to Hews Media Group-Community News, blatantly threatened HMG-CN Publisher Brian Hews for filing a complaint to the Fair Political Practices Commission about corruption in the March 2017 La Mirada City Council elections.

“Well imagine that,” said Hews, “I expose potential corruption in La Mirada which ends up with a FPPC investigation, and the Whittier Daily News goes after me for filing the complaint.”

The FPPC complaint was centered around Andrew Serega and possible collaboration with an independent expenditure committee called Residents for a Better La Mirada.

In a series of articles, Hews laid out a case for collaboration, culminating in the complaint and FPPC investigation.

Sprague unashamedly lifted one story, without giving Hews attribution.


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Additional Connections Are Troubling Between La Mirada Council Candidates Aiello and Sarega




“I let them have it about copying my story,” said Hews, “this is obvious payback by Sprague and his bosses.”

Sprague indicated in his email that, “I’ve talked to a journalism professor who says it’s unethical to file a complaint and then write a story about it, how do you respond.”

Simple research by Sprague on HMG-CN’s website loscerritosnews.net would have shown the last article in the series was March 6, Hews sent his complaint to the FPPC on March 10.

“Interesting,” said Hews,  “and he is the investigative reporter for the Whittier Daily News.”

Sprague, in other parts of the email, showed his obvious disdain for Hews stating, “That’s not a response to my questions. You filed a complaint with the FPPC and I want to ask you why you filed it. Also, what are the allegations you’re making against Andrew Sarega? Also, I’ve talked to a journalism professor who says it’s unethical to file a complaint and then write a story about it. How do your respond?

“I just don’t get the motivation of the Whittier Daily News or the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, ” said Hews. “Both newspapers ignore corrupt politicians like Leticia Vasquez, Bob Apodaca, and James Roybal at Central Basin Water, while also ignoring Ben Cardenas, Lani Cupchoy, and Edgar Cisneros at Montebello Unified School District. They don’t go after the real questionable politicians, those are their sources, and obviously very questionable sources.”

HMG-CN asked for a quote from Sprague and Editor Brian Harr after laying out the email from Sprague.

“It is clear that you are going after HMG-CN Publisher Brian Hews trying to discredit him for turning in corrupt politicians, how do you respond to that?

As of the time of publication of this article both had not responded.





  • The Truth! says:

    The Whittier Daily News is sorry excuse for a newspaper. When have they EVER truely written a piece of investigative reporting? That’s because they’re bottom feeders. Find me a politician anywhere that respects a tool like Mike Sprague.

    You can’t even compare the serious work of Brian Hews’ paper versus the cr*p written by the WDN. Can this Brian Day guy even begin to argue that Hews’ paper first reported on Montebello Unified’s Ruben Rojas’ scandal and then WDN lifted it and claimed “they undercovered” documents? That was a joke!

  • There is no surprise here that Mike Sprague went to defend Tony Aiello.
    Sprague has for years given the Village Idiot of La Mirada tons of coverage in articles.
    Going to the WDN website and enter “tony aiello” in search, I was floored at how many times Sprague went to Aiello for his opinion on local politics.
    Why would Sprague contact the perrenial also ran in local elections for his opinion? God only knows, but it case you didn’t know it Mr Sprague, due to Tony’s lack of ethics, and public fibs, he’s toast. LM won’t tolerate the crap in those mailers or the lunatic Sarega family. Time to cut bait, while you still have a newspaper.

  • Confused in Cerritos says:

    I just came across this story and San Gabriel Valley Tribute’s Brian Day’s comments. First off I’ll say that I use to read the Whittier Daily News but dumped that rag after I realized what hypocrites they are there. Mike Sprague is a joke and his lackluster reporting of Central Basin is appalling. Brian Hews’ reporting on Central Basin has been far more comphrensive than Sprague’s. Let’s face it, the Whittier Daily News NEVER reports a “scoop” or and “exclusive report” because they do absolutely no research. That’s what has won Hews award after award. It’s almost comical that Brian Day has the nerve to bash Hews’ paper.