On Monday, retired finance director Abraham “Abe” De Dios pleaded no contest to a conflict of interest count for his role in a public corruption case that involved Irwindale officials taking pricey trips at taxpayer expense.
Irwindale Mayor Mark Breceda, City Councilman Manuel Garcia and former City Councilwoman Rosemary Ramirez—who is now a planning commissioner—have also been charged with felony counts of embezzlement, conflict of interest and misappropriation of public funds in the same case.
The city officials are accused of taking lavish trips to New York City between 2001 and 2005 where they spent over $200,000 in public funds attending baseball games, Broadway shows and using limousine services.
De Dios pled guilty because, according to his attorney Daniel Nixon, “he wants to move on with his life.” In addition to He was ordered by the courts to pay $5,301 in restitution and more than $4,000 in court fees and fines.
The other defendants plan to continue fighting the charges.
“He didn’t receive any money from the city,” remarked Nixon. “The thing that got him embroiled in this prosecution was that his role as city finance director involved the reimbursements that were paid to council members.”
Irwindale is a small city in Los Angeles County with about 1,400 residents.
Read the full story at the Pasadena Star-News.