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Grand Jury Indicts Rizzo, Spaccia On Additional Fraud Charges

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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A Los Angeles County grand jury has indicted former Bell City Manager Robert Rizzo and his assistant, Angela Spaccia, on additional charges of misappropriating public funds, conflict of interest, falsifying public documents and secreting public documents.

The indictment, which was returned Tuesday, charges Rizzo and Angela Spaccia with seven new felony counts. Rizzo is also charged with an additional conflict of interest count.

The two, who pleaded not guilty, were already awaiting trial on charges alleging that they and other former Bell city officials misappropriated public funds.

The indictment alleges that Spaccia drafted employment contracts for herself and Rizzo that gave them both significant pay raises without the City Council’s approval, and that Rizzo ordered the creation of false contracts dividing his salary into five parts to make it look like his salary was “much smaller than it was.”

The indictment also alleges that Rizzo and Spaccia falsified documents purporting to be contracts for former police Chief Randy Adams and hid documents indicating that he was being paid nearly $10,000 more per pay period.

Rizzo and Spaccia were charged last September along with Mayor Oscar Hernandez, council members Teresa Jacobo, George Mirabal and Luis Artiga and former council members Victor Bello and George Cole in a case accusing them of bilking taxpayers out of roughly $5.5 million through lofty salaries, benefits and illicit loans of public money.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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