Compton Treasury Official Arrested on Charges of Embezzling $3.7 Million

Compton graffiti (Kevork Djansezian / Getty)
Kevork Djansezian / Getty

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced on Wednesday that it had arrested the former deputy treasurer of the City of Compton for stealing $3.7 million from city coffers.

In a press release, the FBI stated:

Salvador Galvan, 47, of La Mirada, was arrested this morning by special agents with the FBI pursuant to a criminal complaint that charges him with theft concerning programs receiving federal funds.

Galvan, who worked in the Compton Treasurer’s Office for more than 20 years, was responsible for tallying the cash received by the city as payment for parking tickets, business licenses and other fees. After the cash was counted, Galvan prepared the money for deposit into a city bank account.

According to the criminal complaint filed late yesterday in United States District Court, Galvan skimmed cash from the daily receipts on numerous occasions. An audit of the city’s cash deposits “identified discrepancies which vary from approximately $200 to $8,000 per day,” according to the affidavit in support of the complaint.

According to the FBI, Galvan had lived an increasingly luxurious lifestyle. He was also reportedly noted for his “generosity,” according to a work colleague.

Galvan had already been arrested on similar charges last year by the Los Angeles County Sherrif’s Department, and faces new charges as a result of further FBI investigations, the press release stated.

If convicted, Galvan faces up to five years in federal prison.

Other Los Angeles County municipalities have seen major conviction cases in recent years. The most notorious was the corruption in the City of Bell, a predominantly poor municipality in which officials enriched themselves at public expense.

One city administrator in Bell was arrested in 2010 sentenced in 2014 to 12 years in prison for his “Godfather” role in the corruption scheme, which included stealing $8.8 million.

Compton is a relatively poor and working-class city, whose residents are primarily Latino and African-American, and which has become internationally famous through its export of West Coast hip-hop music and culture.



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