Former Lynwood school official accused of embezzling public funds

LOS ANGELES - A former official of the Lynwood Unified School District accused of diverting more than $700,000 in public money over four years - using district funds to pay for personal expenses including sporting event tickets, gasoline expenses and personal taxes - is expected to be arraigned tomorrow, the District Attorney's Office announced.Deputy District Attorney Dana Aratani of the Public Integrity Division said William Douglas Agopian, 60, of Santa Ana is charged with 21 felony counts including misappropriation of public funds, embezzlement by a public or private officer and filing a false tax return. Agopian is scheduled to appear for arraignment in Department 30 of the Foltz Criminal Justice Center. He was arrested Wednesday without incident by investigators of the District Attorney's Bureau of Investigation. The criminal complaint, filed for arrest warrant on Feb. 14, includes aggravated white-collar crime and excessive-taking allegations. Agopian, the former chief business officer the Lynwood Unified School District, allegedly took the money from a bank account that was not on the school district books. The account had initially been established to facilitate a sister-city trip to Mexico for Lynwood Unified School District students, the prosecutor said. If convicted as charged, Agopian faces a maximum state prison term of 19 years, four months. His bail has been recommended at $700,000.

********** Published: February 16, 2012 - Volume 10 - Issue 44