Supporters of jailed Assessor John Noguez issued a public appeal Sunday to give him bail money as a birthday gift.
Noguez, who has spent the last month and a half behind bars for allegedly accepting at least $185,000 in bribes, turned 48 Thursday. He has struggled to make bail, set at $1.16 million.
Late Sunday, a group called Friends of John Noguez sent out an email blast soliciting donations. They noted he loved throwing birthday parties every year that usually doubled as fundraisers.
"Now more than ever, John needs your support and we are asking you on his behalf," they wrote in the email.
"We are still raising money to make his bail so that he can be at home to care for his three precious dachshunds, visit his ailing mother, and spend time with family and friends as he moves forward with his legal case," they added.
The email provided a link that allowed direct transfers from a donor's Visa, Mastercard and American Express accounts to the John Noguez for Assessor 2010 Attorney's Fees Fund.
It also contained an invitation -- for Noguez's personal friends and family only -- to a birthday celebration and fundraiser at Leonardo's restaurant in Huntington Park on Thursday.
Friends of John Noguez had advice for donors concerned about remaining anonymous, telling them, "If you donate $99.00 or less to the fund then your name will not appear on finance reports that are due at the end of the year. If you donate a total of $100 or more, then your name will appear on the financial reports that are public record."
They also criticized the media for supposedly hounding Noguez and his personal friends and family.
"The reporters know we do not want to speak with them, but they continue to harass many of us still," it added. "We are tired of them using John to sell their newspapers as they face bankruptcy. We are especially tire (sic) of the illusions of grandeur of the pseudo-online news blogs run by trolls."
Noguez was arrested Oct. 17 and charged with 24 felonies, including accepting $185,000 in bribes from a tax agent.
Noguez's attorney, Michael Proctor, and Friends of Noguez, have not immediately responded to requests for comment.
Also charged in the alleged scam were tax agent Ramin Salari, and Assessor's Office employees Mark McNeil and Scott Schenter.