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Los Angeles city councilman charged with embezzlement and perjury

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Prosecutors charged a Los Angeles city councilman with embezzlement and perjury Tuesday in the latest criminal case to upend the scandal-plagued governing board of the nation’s second-largest city.

Curren Price, Jr. faces five counts of grand theft by embezzlement, three counts of perjury and two counts of conflict of interest, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. The office did not release the criminal complaint or any details about what the charges stem from.

The council has been rocked by a series of scandals. In March, a longtime councilman was convicted on federal corruption charges. Last year, a racism scandal that shook public trust in Los Angeles government triggered the resignation in October of then-City Council President Nury Martinez and a powerful labor leader, Ron Herrera.

Price was first elected to the council in 2013 and currently serves as its president pro tempore. His district includes South Los Angeles and parts of the city’s downtown. His term is set to expire in 2026.

“We have not seen the charges filed against Councilmember Curren Price. It’s highly unusual for charges like this to be brought up against a sitting City Councilmember without any prior notice or discussion,” said Angelina Valencia-Dumarot, a spokesperson for Price, in an email.

She added that Price, “looks forward to defending himself once he’s had an opportunity to address these charges.”

The councilman had attended a city council meeting earlier in the day Tuesday.

The charges were first reported Tuesday by the Los Angeles Times.

Stefanie Dazio And Michael R. Blood, The Associated Press

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