Former Councilman John Drayman was indicted Tuesday on charges that he embezzled at least $304,000 from the weekly farmers market in Montrose.
In a 28-count grand jury indictment unsealed in Los Angeles County Superior Court, prosecutors also allege that Drayman committed perjury when he excluded earnings sources on Fair Political Practices forms, submitted a bogus credit application in 2010 to a mortgage lender and falsified tax returns to hide the embezzlement, which they say occurred between January 2004 and April 2011.
Drayman, who was arraigned on the felony charges at a downtown Los Angeles courtroom, pleaded not guilty. He is accused of: one count of embezzlement, 10 counts of filing false tax returns, five counts of money laundering, three counts of forgery, one count filing a false financial statement and eight counts of perjury by declaration.
Los Angeles County Deputy District Atty. Susan Schwartz said in court that the evidence shows Drayman deposited funds he collected from the Montrose Harvest Market into his own bank accounts, and the extent of embezzlement may have reached $880,000.