Judge issues warrant for wife of embattled El Cajon councilman

Embattled El Cajon councilman Ben Kalasho and his wife, Jessica
(Photo: Jeff McDonald/SD U-T)

SAN DIEGO — San Diego Superior Court judge issued an arrest warrant Friday for the wife of an El Cajon councilman after she failed to appear for a scheduled hearing in a case in which the couple is being sued for fraud and defamation.

The order was issued by Judge Timothy B. Taylor against Jessica Kalasho, one of the co-defendants in a civil lawsuit against El Cajon Councilman Bessmon “Ben” Kalasho and his for-profit business group, the Middle Eastern Chamber of Commerce.

It was not immediately clear Friday if police or sheriff’s deputies would search for Jessica Kalasho and arrest her on sight, or if she would be given an opportunity to turn herself into law enforcement or to the court.

Jessica Kalasho was supposed to attend what’s called a debtor’s review, a proceeding at which plaintiffs are allowed to question defendants about their personal assets. Neither Kalasho nor the couple’s lawyer returned a message seeking comment on Friday.

One of the allegations leveled by the plaintiffs’ lawyers is that the Kalashos have hidden personal assets to avoid paying a potential judgment. They are being sued for allegedly creating false social-media accounts to disparage their critics.

Read Jeff McDonald’s full report on the San Diego Union-Tribune.