LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Former Bell City Manager Robert Rizzo was sentenced Wednesday morning to 12 years in state prison for his role in the Bell corruption scandal.
Rizzo, who was also ordered to pay $8.8 million in restitution, pleaded no contest in October to 69 counts, including misappropriation of public funds and perjury.
KCAL 9’s Dave Lopez reports for the first time since the scandal erupted four years ago, Rizzo made a public apology.
“I breached the public’s confidence by starting to look at the position more towards myself than the community. I am very, very sorry for that,” he said.
The 60-year-old is the accused ring leader of the Bell scandal, which inflated salaries of city administrators, ultimately costing taxpayers $15 million.
KNX 1070’s Ron Kilgore reports city manager Doug Willmore says the trial may be over, but the damage done by Rizzo to the city’s financial infrastructure will take a long time to repair.