The KKK, A nudist colony and....
now a city administrator embezzling over three hundred grand. That is the town of Davie Florida in Broward County both past and present. If this is true, other city officials should be held accountable by the voters. Why wasn't this man properly supervised? Just more tax dollars flushed down the toilet here in Florida.
Open Post- Basil's Blog, Don Surber, Indepundit, California Conservative, Bright & Early and Cao's Blog
DAVIE – An arrest warrant was issued by state agents on Wednesday for the municipality's top administrator on three criminal charges that include allegations he embezzled $362,329 from the town.
Christopher J. Kovanes, 34, of Coconut Creek, was charged by the state in Broward County on one count each of organized fraud, grand theft and a violation of the Florida Money Laundering Act, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and police records. He has not yet been arrested.
According to the FDLE Web site, Kovanes also is under investigation on allegations involving illegal pornography. That case is a separate matter and remains part of an active criminal probe, FDLE said in a press release. No charges have been filed in that investigation, which continues.
Kovanes, who held the administrator's job about a year, was placed on paid leave in mid-October and ordered to stay away from the town hall while the state investigated him for what Police Chief John George then called "potential wrongdoing." The decision to suspend Kovanes came after a closed-door session during a special meeting with two FDLE investigators and then a 4-1 council vote.
Kovanes was paid $148,000 a year as administrator. He took the job as interim administrator in September 2004 after Tom Willi resigned to become Monroe County's administrator. Kovanes was later named the permanent administrator. Kovanes, who has a master's degree in public administration, had been the town's programs administrator.
According to an FDLE complaint affidavit, Kovanes opened an account at a Bank Atlantic branch for a company called GEO Inc. – Geographic Environmental Origin Inc. – in January 2004 with himself as the sole signatory. It was opened with a $15,000 Town of Davie check made payable to GEO.
The state says Kovanes created GEO as a "shell company" – a simple device to cash the Town of Davie checks, 20 in all that ranged from $4,600 up to $55,890. They allege he used the money on himself, but do not describe how or what for.
Other town officials became suspicious of the checks being written to GEO and later discovered that Kovanes was listed in state records as president of the mystery company, which had never sent a representative to town offices and did not appear to be doing any work for Davie.
An FDLE agent said she found a series of town checks drawn on the GEO account. The last check -- $55,890 -- was dated Oct. 14, 2005, four days before Kovanes was suspended from his job.
The checks to GEO totaled $362,329, Special FDLE Agent Lisa Valentine said in the affidavit. Most did not exceed $15,000, but the last four cashed by GEO were for $35,000, $45,750, $28,000 and $55,890.