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Corruption Exposed in the Orange County Public Guardian's Office

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In Orange County, a corrupt public guardian is stealing assets from the elderly and firing officials who dare to ask questions.

Todd Spitzer, a deputy district attorney who is respected by members of both parties, was alerted to possible misconduct in the Orange County Public Guardian's office last week. He asked a few questions and lost his job. Why?

The Public Guardian John Williams is making $138,000 as a base salary for supposedly looking after the assets of elderly or deceased citizens. Articles written in a variety of papers and journals detail that Williams has been mismanaging assets and looting the property of retirees in this County, which went bankrupt some time back.

The Orange County Grand Jury twice reprimanded Williams in 2009 over financial mismanagement. Earlier this year, he was hit with allegations that he misrepresented travel expenditures.

The worst of the scandals comes from concerned citizens who have witnessed seniors lose their hard earned assets to this corrupt official, who forces his way into the lives of retirees, takes over their property and runs up expenses against seniors who are powerless to save themselves from the weight of his resources.

Williams is a Republican who is represented by the same law firm as three of the county's supervisors. There is a real hands off approach to the corruption connected with his office. Some say officials seem frightened to question him. Spitzer apparently didn't know about the consequences of daring to ask questions.

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Corruption doesn't like questions and Spitzer was a casualty.

Bea Foster, a former Democratic candidate who ran against Spitzer for assembly, has said she is impressed by his honesty and integrity. In this case, Spitzer's honesty and integrity seemingly got him sacked.

Does the California Attorney General have the courage to look into the corruption in the Public Guardian's office? Seniors interviewed hope so. One senior pointed out that seniors have a better voter turnout than other age groups. If Williams doesn't take away the votes of Orange County seniors, Todd Spitzer will be able to take advantage of the concerns seniors have regarding this issue in his bid for District Attorney in 2012.

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This writer is an investigative journalist who has worked to expose corruption in the public sector.

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Corruption Exposed in the Orange County Public Guardian's Office