A Los Angeles Superior Court judge has scheduled a preliminary hearing against three Irwindale officials accused of embezzlement, in an ongoing dispute regarding their expenditure of taxpayer funds. Current Irwindale Mayor Mark Breceda, Councilman Manuel Garcia and former Councilwoman Rosemary Ramirez have been accused of misspending more than $200,000 in taxpayer funds over time. Ramirez is also facing charges of witness intimidations for threats alleged to have been made via her computer.
Embezzlement allegations span a decade
In February, 10 criminal embezzlement counts against the trio were dismissed because the judge determined that the statute of limitations on those accusations had expired. As part of the same embezzlement case, former Irwindale City Manager Steve Blancarte pleaded guilty to misappropriation of public funds and was sentenced to three years of probation and fines. Retired City Finance Director Abraham De Dios also pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of conflict of interest and was sentenced to fines and three years of probation.
Embezzlement, public corruption and fraud charges are exceptionally serious. Conviction can result in prison sentences, restitution, fines, probation and other ongoing restrictions. In addition, mere accusations of embezzlement, fraud or corruption can bring unwanted attention to your life, permanently damage your professional and personal reputations, and make finding gainful employment difficult, if not impossible.
If you’ve been accused of embezzlement, fraud, public corruption or similar charges, you need an experienced, determined Los Angeles criminal defense attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has practiced criminal defense exclusively for more than 30 years and is known in the Los Angeles County area as a diligent advocate for his clients’ rights and freedoms.
Don’t risk your freedom, your lifestyle and your personal reputation on an inexperienced criminal defense attorney. Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County embezzlement case.
Photo Credit: Marcus Buckner, via FreeImages.com