Judge refuses inquiry into Rizzo's Bell corruption case plea

City Corruption

Irfan Khan/AP

FILE - This March 9, 2011 file image shows former Bell City Administrator Robert Rizzo listens in court in Los Angeles. Rizzo, who masterminded a corruption scheme that paid exorbitant salaries to city officials, pleaded no contest, Thursday, Oct. 3, 2013, to all 69 charges brought against him.

A Los Angeles judge has refused to order a hearing disclosing details of her decision allowing former Bell city manager Robert Rizzo to plead no contest to 69 corruption charges last week.

An attorney for Rizzo's co-defendant, Angela Spaccia, said Tuesday that Judge Kathleen Kennedy violated his client's rights by personally negotiating a plea bargain that requires Rizzo to testify for the prosecution in Spaccia's trial.

Harland Braun also accused prosecutors of conspiring with Rizzo's lawyer to keep the press from finding out about the plea hearing.

Prosecutors said they were shocked by Rizzo's decision and didn't believe it would happen.

They commended the judge's action when she reduced Rizzo's potential sentence from 70 years to 10 to 12 years but insisted they had nothing to do with it.

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