A disgraced former municipal official who once claimed California's largest public pension isn't giving it up without a fight.
Bruce Malkenhorst is a former administrator of the tiny city of Vernon near Los Angeles. After he retired in 2005 he was receiving an annual pension of about $500,000.
Malkenhorst later pleaded guilty to misappropriating public funds and the state cut his pension to $115,000.
The Los Angeles Times reported Monday that the 78-year-old Malkenhorst is suing Vernon to make up the difference.
His lawyers say the city is responsible for keeping his retirement benefits at the higher level, even if the state balks.
Malkenhorst earlier filed two lawsuits to prevent his state pension from being reduced. He lost both, but is appealing.
A California Public Employees Retirement System audit last year found Vernon officials improperly boosted the pensions of nearly two dozen top employees.
The reports of exorbitant compensation are similar to those that led to the resignation of the city manager and other officials in the nearby city of Bell, which became a poster child for municipal corruption when it was discovered its municipal leaders looted millions of dollars from its treasury.
Former City Manager Robert Rizzo was poised to receive a pension of about $650,000 before the state slashed it to $50,000 after Rizzo and other officials were accused of corruption.
A jury convicted five of the former Bell council members in March of misappropriating public funds by creating an authority that met only once, did no work and existed only to pay them. One former councilman, who was not in office when the agency was created, was acquitted.
Rizzo faces trial later this year with his former assistant.
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