Thursday, May 27, 2010

Los Angeles County audit finds 101 instances of fraud in last six months of 2009 - latimes.com

Los Angeles County audit finds 101 instances of fraud in last six months of 2009 - latimes.com

The county's fraud hotline typically receives about 500 tips every six months. The latest report was unusual because it found misconduct that touched the highest levels of the Fire Department and the office of the county's chief executive, as well as hundreds of thousands of dollars in fraud.

• A Department of Public Social Services employee obtained the personal and confidential information of 82 welfare participants and used the information to file fraudulent income tax returns for refunds totaling at least $100,000. The employee, Trang Dinh, was fired after the alleged conduct came to light, auditors said.

• Three senior Fire Department managers played golf during county work hours but claimed a full day on their timecards, according to investigators. One of the employees also recorded overtime for that day, the report said. Two of the employees were not disciplined because at the time, Fire Department rules allowed them to report they had worked full shifts if they worked at least one hour, a practice that has since been changed.

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