Closing arguments begin in Bell corruption trial

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Closing arguments began Wednesday in the public corruption trial of Angela Spaccia the former assistant city manager for the City of Bell accused of misappropriating millions of dollars in taxpayer money to pay herself and others huge salaries.

Spaccia jotted down notes as Deputy District Attorney Max Huntsman spoke to the jury. 
 
The prosecutor focused on a highly scrutinized email exchange between Spaccia and the incoming Bell city police chief Randy Adams in 2009, where Spaccia told Adams, "Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered.”  
 
“And she told him we will all get fat together," Adams sad. "He was saying that he was going to take all of Bell’s money, and she said that’s exactly what we’re doing and you can join us.”
 
Adams made more than $450,000 as police chief and Spaccia made more than half a million dollars annually by the time the scandal broke just over three years ago.
 
Huntsman countered Spaccia’s testimony that her boss Robert Rizzo called the shots. The prosecutor said Spaccia was actually the mastermind who illegally awarded huge raises and retirement benefits — without the city council’s approval — to Rizzo, others and herself.
 
“She gave herself a 20 percent raise for two months after her last raise in 2008," Huntsman said. "Apparently she did an incredible job and now needed to get a 20 percent raise. She did that.”
 
Spaccia faces 13 felony corruption charges, including misappropriation of public funds, conflict of interest and other charges. She says she’s innocent.

The prosecution will continue closing arguments Thursday — then it’s the defense’s turn.

This story has been updated.

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