former city employee arrested for stealing funds

Asians behaving badly... embezzling city employee edition! In Seattle, a former Public Utilities employee has been arrested on first-degree theft for allegedly stealing from city project funds: Former city employee arrested in $1 million theft from Seattle Public Utilities.

An investigation found that 44-year-old Joseph Phan, a former project engineer, stole more than $1 million over five years by collecting payments and diverting money for water-main extension projects into a private bank account:
As a project engineer for Seattle Public Utilities (SPU), Joseph Phan met with developers and customers to estimate the cost of extending or installing city-water mains and meters.

He also collected deposits and payments for the work, typically checks made out to the city of Seattle.

Police say that in 2006, Phan opened a bank account in his name and that of the city and began depositing those customer payments. By January 2011, the checks totaled almost $1.1 million.

Police say Phan, 44, bought a rental house, a car, other property and paid off credit cards with some of the money. Police seized $220,000 from the bank account, but about $500,000 is unaccounted for, said John Carver, King County senior deputy prosecuting attorney, at a Friday court hearing after Phan's Thursday arrest on suspicion of first-degree theft.
Damn, Joseph Phan! What were you planning on doing with all that money? And did you really think that you wouldn't get caught? It's not like the city has a whole lot of money to go around and get overlooked. More here: Ex-Seattle Public Utilities employee accused of stealing $1M arrested.

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