Parking Garage Manager Arraigned on Fraud and Larceny Charges
A municipal parking lot manager was arraigned in Lawrence District Court today for allegedly stealing money from the garage and performing campaign-related tasks for Mayor William Lantiqua while at his city job following his arrest by Massachusetts State Police detectives assigned to the Essex District Attorney’s Office, FBI agents and Lawrence police officers.
Justo Garcia, 60, of 0 B Pleasant Terrace in Lawrence, pleaded not guilty in Lawrence District Court to Larceny (MGL Chapter 266, Section 30), Fraudulent Submission of Materials to a Municipality (MGL Chapter 266 Section, 67A), Unlawful Receipt of Substantial Value by a Municipal Employee (MGL Chapter 268A, Section 23 (b)(2)) and Presenting a Fraudulent Claim by a Municipal Employee (MGL Chapter 268A, Section 23(b)(4)).
“It is particularly disturbing in a city facing serious financial challenges that a municipal employee brazenly steals money from the city coffers,” District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said. “These acts are an affront to honest government and to hard working, taxpayers who have a right to expect more from municipal employees. My office will continue to work to identify and prosecute criminal acts which deprive the taxpayers of funds that should be used to provide city services.”
Judge Gaffney released him on the condition that he surrender his passport within 24 hours, check in with district court probation once a week and provide any and all names that he is known by or uses to identify himself to probation.
Essex Assistant District Attorney Michael Patten represented the Commonwealth.
The arrest is a result of an ongoing investigation, which included enhanced surveillance techniques, by Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett’s Office, with assistance from the Massachusetts State Police Detectives assigned to the District Attorney’s Office, FBI, Lawrence Police Department, the Attorney General’s Office and the Office of the Inspector General.
Mr. Garcia is presumed innocent until proven guilty is scheduled to appear in court again on July 24, 2013 for a Pre-Trial Hearing.