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Police arrest former Los Altos city employee

Original post made on Feb 8, 2012

A former City of Los Altos employee suspected of stealing more than $30,000 from the city through fraudulent transactions surrendered Monday, Feb. 6, to police, who had obtained a $50,000 arrest warrant for the employee, police said.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, February 8, 2012, 9:14 AM

Comments (3)

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Posted by as usual
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Feb 8, 2012 at 9:34 am

Other newspapers are printing the mug shot of this guy. As usual, Palo Alto Online does rarely prints mug shots of white criminal suspects.

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Posted by Another-Government-Screw-up!
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 8, 2012 at 3:18 pm

> "We really didn't know what was going on until police got more
> into the discovery of it," Logan said.

This is truly bizarre. The people who first identified the improper spending was no doubt the finance department. If not, why not?

Usually expense reports are reviewed, and signed off by a person's manager. If someone is the head of the department in a small town (like Los Altos), then who signs off on expense reports for people who are at the top of the management structure?

So .. where did the charges actually show up? On the expense report for the conference? Of was the review of this guy's expenses wider than the conference expenses?

If this fellow slipped the charges into a number of expense reports, they might be hard to spot. If he slipped $30K into one expense report for a short conference--not a good idea.

And why is it that the police can figure out expense report fraud, but not the finance people?

At any rate, it's clear that another government agency has gotten caught with its pants down. The Daily Post has been carrying some articles on fraud in San Mateo County with the same theme--no body was conducting appropriate oversight on employees that had access to the public's money.

Interesting that the article doesn't talk about recovery of funds (or equipment). Of course, with insurance--they can ding the insurance company, which will ding its customers--pushing the cost of these theft out to the general public.

Thanks a lot, City of Los Altos--for not managing your people, and forcing the rest of us to carry a little bit of your load!

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Posted by Solon
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Feb 9, 2012 at 5:48 pm

It looked like the fraudulent transaction committed by the government (overpaid? underproductive? unnecessary? at least under managed?) employee was cashing weekly paychecks issued in his name . . . .

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