Bell 8 Scandal
Looking just like the ultimate “Fat Cat” politician, Bell City Manager Robert Rizzo, is charged in a Los Angeles courthouse with siphoning off more than $6.7 million dollars from the small, blue-collar city of Bell, California.
Bell is a tiny, poor city located within Los Angeles county. In 2.5 square miles, one in six of its 38,000 residents live below the poverty line. The per capita income is a mere $24,800, and roughly 90% of its residents are Hispanic or Latino. Rizzo and his fellows allegedly made a killing off of this community.
Among the misdeeds Rizzo and his political cronies are charged with include: squandering public funds, paying themselves outrageous salaries (Rizzo was making nearly $800,000 per year while the President of the United States makes $400,000), voter fraud, and using the city’s taxes as their own personal piggy bank. The Los Angeles County District Attorney has called this case “corruption on steroids.”
The trial has been temporarily put on hold while the California Court of Appeal examines legal procedural issues.