LOS ANGELES (AP) — Eight current and former officials have pleaded not guilty to looting millions of dollars from California’s modest blue-collar city of Bell.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Hilleri G. Merritt ordered them Thursday to return to court Dec. 8 for a preliminary hearing. None of the eight, including Bell’s mayor, vice mayor and ousted city manager spoke except to say “yes” when Merritt asked if they were agreeable to the hearing date.

The not guilty pleas were entered by their attorneys.

An additional hearing was scheduled for Friday for one of the defendants, Councilman George Mirabal, so his lawyer could discuss pretrial motions. A scheduling conflict kept Mirabal’s chief attorney from appearing in court with him Thursday.

Only two of the defendants, Mirabal and former Councilman Victor Bello, are still in custody.

© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Comments (5)
  1. Daniel says:

    Get the impression that the City manager was the master mind and some of these people were clueless as to the reality of what was going on. Lets remember that it is “innocent until proven guilty” the media surely has already had its trial…..

    1. bugman says:

      overweight party animal living the good life in H.B.! dui on top? I agree, mastermind! calpers I here is doing good for retieries!

  2. Oscar says:


  3. Stimpy says:

    Clueless? These people knew exactly what they were doing. All the council people seem to have been born in Mexico. We should check their status.

    Vernon is another corrupt city.

    But that is what this country is built on. Get what you can now and worry later.

    1. Polly says:

      Stumpy your “seem to have been born in Mexico” is not factual
      Rizzo is an Italian name

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Watch & Listen LIVE