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Thursday, December 13 , 2018, 5:37 pm | Fair 62º


Ex-County Employee Sentenced to Prison for Embezzling $2 Million in Public Works Funds

Lynn Hogan Click to view larger
Lynn Hogan

A former employee was sentenced to prison Wednesday after pleading guilty to misappropriation of public funds, forgery and conspiracy, admitting to forging claim forms to take more than $2 million in Santa Barbara County Public Works Department funds.

Lynn Hogan, 48, who entered a guilty plea in April, was sentenced to nine years and eight months in state prison, and ordered to pay $2.5 million in restitution, said Brian Cota, senior deputy district attorney.

That restitution includes $2 million to the county and a $500,000 restitution fine, he said.

Hogan worked for the county for about 28 years and was a senior accountant in the Public Works Department at the time of the criminal activity, between 2008 and 2017, according to prosecutors.

She was one of nine people arrested and charged in this case ,and as part of her guilty plea, she admitted forging claims forms and conspiring with others to take the money.

The other eight defendants, none of whom are county employees, still have ongoing criminal cases.

Christina Huffman and Michelle Lavin both pleaded guilty to charges of theft of public funds, forgery and conspiracy on May 30 and will be sentenced in July, Cota said.

According to Cota, Huffman is expected to be sentenced to six months in County Jail and five years of probation, and ordered to pay about $28,000 in restitution to the county. Lavin is expected to be sentenced to five years in state prison, and be ordered to pay about $312,000 in restitution to the county.

A June 27 preliminary hearing is scheduled for the other defendants, who allegedly received forged checks: Michael Anzivino, Vincent Anzivino, Michael Elliot, Leanna Harada, Richard Kaplinski, and Wendy Puchli.

The District Attorney’s Office amended the criminal complaint to add 64 counts of money laundering against Michael Anzivino and 24 counts of money laundering against Harada, Cota said.

Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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