District Attorney Calls Bell Scandal ‘Corruption On Steroids’

In a press conference moments ago, Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley announced charges against the eight Bell, California city officials who were arrested today after they inflated their salaries, allegedly using around $5.5 million in public funds.

Former Bell City Manager Robert Rizzo, who allegedly banked close to $800,000 a year, was charged with “53 counts of misappropriation of public funds and conflict of interest,” according to the Los Angeles Times.According to the Times, “Angela Spaccia, former assistant city manager; Mayor Oscar Hernandez; councilmembers George Mirabal, Teresa Jacobo and Luis Artiga; and former councilmembers George Cole and Victor Bello” were also arrested.

In his press conference, Cooley called the inflated salaries “corruption on steroids,” and said the officials used public money “as their own piggy bank that they then looted at will.”

Rizzo, who was also arrested in March for a DUI, had his bail set at $3.2 million. Bail for the other officials was between $130,000 to $377,500.