Oscar Hernandez, former Mayor of Bell, California, is on trial for taking a salary of just under $100,000 for a part time job.
His defense – he didn’t know it was illegal because he wasn’t educated enough to know and no one told him.
He and his cronies inflated their salaries with no-show jobs and non-existant commissions.
via CBS News
In prosecutors’ closing arguments on Wednesday, they said the six officials facing charges of misappropriating funds felt they were above the law and collected paychecks for jobs that didn’t exist.
Legally, the officials could have paid themselves $673 a month for what was a part-time job, since they didn’t actually run the city, Deputy District Attorney Ed Miller said. But in addition to their inflated council salaries, the officials appointed each other to commissions that did nothing and often met yearly just to increase their pay, he said.
In the midst of a national economic meltdown, the council members were drawing salaries 3 1/2 times that of the median income of a resident in the blue-collar town, he said.