AirTalk for April 16, 2014

With sentencing of Rizzo, the Bell scandal comes to an end

City Corruption

Nick Ut/AP

Former Bell city manager Robert Rizzo, listens to questions from the media, as he leaves the Edward R. Roybal Federal building and United States courthouse Monday, April 14, 2014.

The man authorities say masterminded a scheme that fleeced the small Los Angeles suburb of Bell out of millions of dollars has been sentenced to 33 months in prison for income tax evasion, the AP reports.

City News Service says former Bell City Manager Robert Rizzo was sentenced Monday by a federal judge. The 60-year-old Rizzo pleaded guilty in January.

On Wednesday Rizzo faces sentencing in state court on 69 counts of fraud, misappropriation of public funds and other charges for his role in the Bell scandal. He pleaded no contest in that case in October.

When he was fired by Bell in 2010 Rizzo had an annual salary and benefits package of $1.5 million. Authorities say he dodged nearly $300,000 in taxes by creating a corporation that claimed phony businesses losses.

Guests: 

Nestor Valencia, Mayor of Bell; Valencia has known Robert Rizzo for many years

Ali Saleh, Bell City Council member, founding member of the community group BASTA (Bell Association to Stop the Abuse)


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