Thursday, February 2, 2017

Prosecutor Investigates Council Member Ricardo Pacheco for Corruption

Council Member Ricardo Pacheco
Yesterday, the Los Angeles County District Attorney called Baldwin Park Council Member Ricardo Pacheco to tell him he's under investigation and that representation is recommended. The charge being investigated is called conflict of interest. In short, a conflict of interest violation means that Pacheco voted as an elected official to benefit himself.

Here's the most common example of a conflict. Johnny Appleseed is the mayor of Apple City. Appleseed also owns an apple juice company called Super Juice Incorporated. At a council meeting, Appleseed votes that Super Juice will be the sole provider of all apple juice to all employees of Apple City. Although it can't be proven one hundred percent, the vote is a conflict, because Appleseed has a duty to the citizens of Apple City to make rationale and informed decisions on their behalf, not decisions that would profit Appleseed himself. Hence, that's a conflict of interest.

Here, Pacheco voted to award a Baldwin Park contract to Gentry Brothers Inc. for $1.5 million. What he didn't inform the council was that he worked with Sid Mousavi of AA&E also known as Infrastructure Engineering and Gentry Brothers in a former project with the City of South El Monte. In the City of South El Monte, the former city manager and former mayor, both accused of taking bribes, hired Ricardo Pacheco as a part time project administrator.

It appears that Pacheco was financially motivated when he cast his vote for Gentry Brothers in the $1.5 Million contract, because he supervised Gentry Brothers work in South El Monte and approved their work. So, now he's being investigated by a prosecutorial agency.

Being nervous and upset, Pacheco then voted that the City should pay for his defense attorney's fees. In short, even though Pacheco did something illegal and got caught, he wants us to pay for his defense. If any of you are thinking, something doesn't sound right about voting on his own attorney's fees, you are correct. (Good legal thinking.)

Pacheco voting on his own attorney's fees is another conflict of interest. He has a vested financial interest in that vote. That financial interest is that he doesn't have to spend thousands (which he should be spending) to hire an attorney. Therefore, he violated another conflict of interest.

On top of that, even though it was pointed out to the City Attorney's law firm that Pacheco's vote is a conflict of interest, the attorney did not point it out to the city council members and mayor. Did he not point it out, because he also makes a profit out of it to get three votes? (It's definitely another potential conflict of interest.)

The main point of this article is to show that these people think they can spend taxpayer money like it's their own. The problem with our current democracy is that at some point, they'll run out of our money.

[Update: One document tending to prove Pacheco's conflict of interest vote. The second photo is of an invoice that proves that Pacheco was in the process of approving the South El Monte project.]

Univision and the Tribune both wrote an article. Univision quotes me in the article as saying that The links are here.

Univision Article

San Gabriel Valley Tribune article

1. Top half shows that Pacheco voted for Gentry Brothers
2. Bottom half shows that Pacheco was involved in the South El Monte
discussions with Gentry Brothers when he worked there as a
project administrator. 

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