Shopping Cart
Your Cart is Empty
Quantity:
Subtotal
Taxes
Shipping
Total
There was an error with PayPalClick here to try again
CelebrateThank you for your business!You should be receiving an order confirmation from Paypal shortly.Exit Shopping Cart

California School Fiscal Services

Providing comprehensive business office and consulting services to K-12 traditional schools and charters

Blog

Blog

Former CalPERS chief admits to receiving $200,000 in bribes in paper bag, shoebox

Posted on July 11, 2014 at 10:20 AM

Wow! Just another example of why we should never say "I've heard it all!"

 

Notwithstanding that crime itself, I find a couple of things interesting here. First, I did have to laugh when I read that the payoff occurred at the Downtown Hyatt Sacramento. I hope it didn't coincide with a SSC workshop! Secondly, I also found it comical that the potential fines equal the amount he received in bribes. (If you believe that is all he received) Last, Buenrostro may have to forfeit part of his own PERS pension. Does anyone really believe that he doesn't have his "real" retirement fund in another shoe box somewhere???

 

Can we still say crime doesn't pay these days?

 

______________________________________________

 

 

By Dale Kasler

[email protected] By Dale Kasler The Sacramento Bee Last modified: 2014-07-11T20:02:34Z Published: Friday, Jul. 11, 2014

 

SAN FRANCISCO -- The first two payments were made in paper bags. The last installment came in a shoebox. The handoffs all came at a Sacramento hotel near the Capitol.

 

In a stunning admission covering years of corruption, the former chief executive of CalPERS said Friday he accepted $200,000 in cash, along with a series of other bribes, from a Lake Tahoe businessman who was attempting to influence billions of dollars in pension fund investment decisions.

 

Fred Buenrostro, who ran the nation’s largest public pension fund from 2002 to 2008, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to a charge of conspiracy to commit bribery and fraud. He has agreed to cooperate with federal prosecutors as they pursue charges against his longtime friend, Nevada businessman Alfred Villalobos, a former CalPERS board member.

 

Buenrostro, 64, admitted that Villalobos plied him with casino chips and a trip around the world, plus a high-paying job with his investment firm after leaving CalPERS. He also admitted working with Villalobos to create phony documents to ensure that Villalobos earned his multimillion-dollar fees representing a Wall Street private equity firm seeking CalPERS investments.

 

Most of those allegations had been aired publicly already. What was new Friday was the blockbuster admission that Buenrostro took $200,000 in cash from Villalobos. In his written plea agreement, Buenrostro said Villalobos paid him in three installments in 2007, “all of which was delivered directly to me in the Hyatt hotel in downtown Sacramento across from the Capitol.”

 

According to Buenrostro, Villalobos told him to be careful how he deposited the cash in order to avoid detection by banking authorities. “Villalobos told me to be sure to ‘shuffle’ the currency before making any deposit, as the bills were new and appeared to be in sequential order,” Buenrostro wrote.

 

Later, after he’d left CalPERS and the investigation into their relationship gained momentum, Buenrostro said he accepted an additional $50,000 from Villalobos, paid by check.

 

The former CEO’s guilty plea is the latest chapter in a corruption scandal that first surfaced in 2009 at the California Public Employees’ Retirement System. Documents showed that Villalobos, a former deputy mayor of Los Angeles, had earned $50 million helping his Wall Street clients win investments from CalPERS over several years.

 

“We condemn the misconduct and ethical breaches admitted today by Mr. Buenrostro,” CalPERS said in a prepared statement. “CalPERS looks forward to justice being served in this case and for the individuals involved to be held accountable for their actions.”

 

After years of denying any wrongdoing, Buenrostro faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine when he’s sentenced Jan. 7, 2015. He remains free on bond.“

 

There is no question that the chickens have come home to roost for Mr. Buenrostro,” said his lawyer, William Portanova of Sacramento, after a brief court hearing. “He is starting a new chapter in his life. He is a 64-year-old man who is ready to tell all.” Buenrostro declined comment as he left the courtroom.

 

His old friend Villalobos will continue to fight charges filed in the case, said Villalobos’ defense attorney Bruce Funk.

 

“We don’t think there’s any truthful information (Buenrostro) could give that could affect Mr. Villalobos,” Funk said after the court hearing.

 

The criminal trial was supposed to begin earlier this week with jury selection. Instead, it has been postponed, probably until the fall. Villalobos, 70, is in poor health and wasn’t in court Friday. He listened to the proceedings by phone.

 

Buenrostro, in his plea agreement, admitted taking bribes large and small. He let Villalobos host and pay for his 2004 wedding at Lake Tahoe. Villalobos took Buenrostro and a CalPERS board member on a 2006 worldwide trip (The member isn’t identified in the plea agreement, but a state lawsuit filed in 2010 identified him as Charles Valdes, who has since left the board).

 

Villalobos paid for his rooms at two Tahoe casinos, Harveys and Harrah’s. And Villalobos delivered on a promise of a $25,000-a-month job for Buenrostro after the CEO left CalPERS in 2008. The job ended two years later, about the time Villalobos and his company filed for bankruptcy.

 

In 2005, Buenrostro said he watched Villalobos give casino chips to certain CalPERS board members and to Buenrostro’s wife. At the time, CalPERS was considering awarding a pharmacy contract to a health care company.

 

Buenrostro didn’t identify the company, and said the board members are no longer at CalPERS. In 2011, CalPERS fired a New Jersey drug-distributor, Medco Health Solutions, after it was revealed that Medco paid Villalobos about $4 million to help win a contract to supply pharmaceuticals to CalPERS members. The firm, which was later sold, paid a $2.7 million fine to settle a state investigation but didn’t admit any wrongdoing.

 

In addition, Buenrostro said he worked with Villalobos to “cover up the evidence of our corrupt relationship by concealing and destroying records.” In 2010, after he invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination during questioning by Securities and Exchange Commission investigators, Buenrostro said he received a $50,000 check from Villalobos.

 

Buenrostro said the $50,000 was supposedly a loan, but Villalobos told him he probably wouldn’t have to repay it.

 

If Buenrostro had gone to trial and been convicted on all charges, he was facing up to 40 years in prison. The conspiracy charge to which he admitted carries a five-year maximum penalty. So far the prosecutors haven’t made any sentencing recommendation, but agreed to ask for a reduced sentence based on Buenrostro’s “truthful cooperation,” said his lawyer Portanova. U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer will sentence him.

 

The original indictment was fairly narrow. It focused mainly on a series of letters Buenrostro said he created on CalPERS stationery at Villalobos’ behest.

 

Villalobos’ most important client, Apollo Global Management, had demanded disclosure letters in which the pension fund said it realized that Villalobos would earn fees from Apollo if the firm got CalPERS investments. When he couldn’t get a CalPERS investment officer to sign a disclosure letter, Villalobos turned to Buenrostro, who put together the letters on the pension fund’s stationary, according to the plea agreement.

 

Buenrostro said no one at CalPERS saw the letters, which Villalobos then mailed to Apollo. The firm got $3 billion of CalPERS’ money in 2007 and 2008, and Villalobos earned fees of $14 million. Apollo has said it wasn’t aware of any wrongdoing.

 

An investigative report commissioned by CalPERS said it was unlikely that Villalobos and Buenrostro were able to steer investment dollars to Villalobos’ clients. But the report, by Washington, D.C., securities attorney Philip Khinda, said Villalobos’ clients probably charged CalPERS millions of dollars in extra investment-management fees to compensate for the money they paid Villalobos.

 

The guilty plea marked the latest chapter in the downfall of Buenrostro, a longtime state employee and former deputy director of the state Department of Personnel Administration who became CalPERS CEO in 2002.

 

Because of his guilty plea to a felony, Buenrostro could have to forfeit a portion of his CalPERS pension, said fund spokesman Brad Pacheco. The amount is to be determined, he said.

Categories: Lawsuits

Post a Comment

Oops!

Oops, you forgot something.

Oops!

The words you entered did not match the given text. Please try again.

19745 Comments

Reply off white
4:02 PM on April 17, 2022 
I precisely desired to say thanks yet again. I do not know the things I would have created without the concepts contributed by you regarding such question. It was before the horrifying matter for me personally, nevertheless being able to view the well-written fashion you processed that made me to leap over happiness. I am grateful for your guidance and as well , believe you find out what an amazing job you are always providing teaching people today using your web site. I know that you have never come across any of us.
off white http://www.offwhiteoutlet.us.org
Reply supreme
4:01 PM on April 17, 2022 
I simply wanted to make a brief word to be able to appreciate you for those pleasant guidelines you are giving at this website. My time intensive internet research has at the end of the day been honored with awesome concept to share with my family. I would believe that we readers actually are very much endowed to be in a very good place with many special individuals with very helpful concepts. I feel really lucky to have used the weblog and look forward to some more enjoyable minutes reading here. Thank you once more for a lot of things.
supreme http://www.supreme.us.org
Reply supreme new york
4:01 PM on April 17, 2022 
I want to express appreciation to the writer just for rescuing me from this issue. Right after looking out throughout the internet and obtaining tips that were not productive, I believed my life was done. Existing without the strategies to the issues you've fixed by way of this site is a critical case, as well as the kind which may have in a wrong way affected my entire career if I hadn't encountered your web site. Your main competence and kindness in taking care of almost everything was important. I don't know what I would have done if I hadn't come upon such a subject like this. I'm able to at this time relish my future. Thanks very much for your impressive and result oriented guide. I will not hesitate to recommend your web site to anyone who needs to have assistance about this subject matter.
supreme new york http://www.supremeclothingstore.com
Reply curry 8
4:01 PM on April 17, 2022 
My husband and i got peaceful Louis managed to deal with his researching from the precious recommendations he made from your very own weblog. It's not at all simplistic to just possibly be making a gift of methods that most people may have been trying to sell. So we already know we need the writer to thank for this. All the illustrations you made, the straightforward web site menu, the relationships your site make it possible to promote - it is everything great, and it's making our son and the family believe that this subject is pleasurable, and that's highly indispensable. Thanks for the whole thing!
curry 8 http://www.curry-8.us
Reply kawhi leonard shoes
3:39 PM on April 17, 2022 
I am glad for writing to let you know what a cool experience my cousin's child undergone browsing yuor web blog. She came to understand lots of issues, which include how it is like to possess a wonderful giving character to let other folks very easily learn about a variety of impossible topics. You actually exceeded people's expectations. Thank you for churning out such insightful, healthy, explanatory and unique thoughts on that topic to Kate.
kawhi leonard shoes http://www.kawhileonardshoes.us
Reply yeezy shoes
3:30 PM on April 17, 2022 
I needed to draft you one little note to thank you very much again for your personal magnificent advice you've documented on this site. This is quite unbelievably open-handed of you to offer extensively exactly what most people might have advertised as an electronic book to help with making some dough for themselves, notably considering that you could possibly have tried it in case you considered necessary. The secrets additionally worked to become fantastic way to be aware that the rest have a similar dream much like my personal own to know the truth many more related to this condition. I know there are some more enjoyable occasions ahead for people who view your blog post.
yeezy shoes http://www.shoesyeezy.com
Reply lebron 18
3:27 PM on April 17, 2022 
Thank you so much for giving everyone an extremely special opportunity to check tips from here. It is often very good and as well , stuffed with amusement for me personally and my office co-workers to search your website really three times a week to study the new items you will have. And of course, I am also always motivated for the excellent points served by you. Certain 2 tips in this article are definitely the best we've had.
lebron 18 http://www.lebron18shoes.us
Reply supreme hoodie
3:19 PM on April 17, 2022 
I simply wanted to post a remark so as to thank you for some of the superb tips you are writing here. My rather long internet search has now been honored with high-quality knowledge to talk about with my friends. I 'd assume that many of us readers actually are quite lucky to exist in a remarkable network with very many perfect individuals with very helpful things. I feel extremely grateful to have discovered your entire web site and look forward to some more entertaining minutes reading here. Thanks once again for all the details.
supreme hoodie http://www.supremeclothings.us.com
Reply off white
3:13 PM on April 17, 2022 
I together with my friends were following the good thoughts on your web page and all of the sudden came up with a terrible suspicion I had not expressed respect to the web blog owner for those techniques. The women ended up consequently excited to read them and already have seriously been taking advantage of those things. Thanks for truly being indeed considerate and for using such high-quality areas most people are really needing to be informed on. Our own honest regret for not expressing appreciation to you earlier.
off white http://www.offwhiteoutlet.us.org
Reply supreme hoodie
3:07 PM on April 17, 2022 
Needed to post you one very little remark in order to say thank you the moment again for these spectacular things you've provided on this website. It was surprisingly generous with people like you to give easily all most of us would've offered as an ebook to earn some money for themselves, principally now that you might have done it in case you desired. These guidelines in addition acted to be a fantastic way to understand that other people have the same fervor similar to my personal own to realize significantly more with regard to this matter. I believe there are some more pleasant periods up front for people who read carefully your website.
supreme hoodie http://www.supremes-clothing.com
Reply golden goose shoes
3:05 PM on April 17, 2022 
Thanks so much for giving everyone an extraordinarily pleasant opportunity to read articles and blog posts from here. It is often very pleasurable plus packed with amusement for me personally and my office fellow workers to search the blog nearly three times per week to read the latest secrets you will have. Not to mention, we're at all times amazed considering the gorgeous creative ideas you serve. Selected 3 areas in this posting are undeniably the most suitable we've ever had.
golden goose shoes http://www.goldengooseoutlets.us
Reply kawhi leonard shoes
3:00 PM on April 17, 2022 
I want to convey my passion for your kind-heartedness giving support to visitors who actually need guidance on in this subject. Your personal dedication to passing the message up and down turned out to be definitely productive and have truly encouraged others just like me to achieve their ambitions. Your personal insightful key points entails this much a person like me and still more to my fellow workers. Thank you; from each one of us.
kawhi leonard shoes http://www.kawhileonardshoes.us
Reply bape
2:58 PM on April 17, 2022 
Needed to create you one little word just to say thanks once again just for the wonderful things you've documented above. This has been certainly generous of you to allow freely what a lot of folks would have offered for an e-book to get some cash on their own, certainly seeing that you could have done it if you ever considered necessary. The pointers also served to become good way to realize that some people have a similar dreams much like my very own to learn a great deal more with regard to this issue. I know there are millions of more fun instances up front for folks who scan through your site.
bape http://www.bapesonline.com
Reply off white outlet
2:58 PM on April 17, 2022 
I needed to send you one little remark so as to say thanks as before over the splendid concepts you've contributed here. It's really particularly generous with people like you to grant easily precisely what some people could have marketed for an e book to earn some dough on their own, primarily now that you might well have done it in the event you decided. The tactics in addition served like a fantastic way to comprehend other people online have similar dream just as my very own to find out much more with reference to this issue. I think there are a lot more pleasant situations in the future for those who take a look at your site.
off white outlet http://www.offwhiteoutlet.us.org
Reply kyrie irving
2:57 PM on April 17, 2022 
I am glad for writing to let you be aware of of the fabulous experience our daughter had reading your webblog. She noticed numerous details, which include how it is like to possess an excellent coaching mindset to get the rest very easily completely grasp certain complex subject areas. You undoubtedly surpassed visitors' expected results. Thank you for imparting these great, trustworthy, educational not to mention fun thoughts on your topic to Julie.
kyrie irving http://www.kyrieirvingshoes.us.com
Reply curry shoes
2:40 PM on April 17, 2022 
I definitely wanted to construct a simple message to thank you for some of the fabulous concepts you are showing on this website. My extended internet search has at the end of the day been recognized with good tips to write about with my neighbours. I would repeat that many of us site visitors are quite fortunate to dwell in a fine website with so many wonderful professionals with interesting secrets. I feel extremely privileged to have discovered the website and look forward to really more fun minutes reading here. Thank you once more for everything.
curry shoes http://www.curry6.net
Reply off white x nike
2:37 PM on April 17, 2022 
I not to mention my pals were examining the best ideas on your web site while all of the sudden came up with an awful feeling I had not expressed respect to the web site owner for them. My young men are actually consequently passionate to see all of them and have now absolutely been making the most of these things. Thanks for being so helpful and also for opting for this sort of outstanding guides millions of individuals are really needing to learn about. My sincere regret for not expressing gratitude to sooner.
off white x nike http://www.nikexoffwhite.com
Reply yeezy
2:34 PM on April 17, 2022 
Needed to put you one bit of word in order to thank you so much the moment again for your personal lovely tricks you've shared above. It was certainly strangely generous with you to grant freely what exactly most of us might have distributed for an electronic book to generate some profit for themselves, most notably given that you could possibly have tried it if you ever wanted. The tactics in addition worked to become fantastic way to realize that most people have similar eagerness much like my personal own to understand great deal more around this problem. I believe there are lots of more pleasurable periods ahead for individuals who browse through your website.
yeezy http://www.yeezy350boost.us.com
Reply yeezy shoes
2:33 PM on April 17, 2022 
I want to express my respect for your kind-heartedness supporting folks who must have guidance on in this niche. Your personal commitment to getting the message throughout had become unbelievably powerful and has constantly empowered those much like me to reach their endeavors. The warm and friendly publication implies so much to me and even further to my office workers. Thank you; from each one of us.
yeezy shoes http://www.yeezy-shoes.us.org
Reply supreme clothing
2:32 PM on April 17, 2022 
I have to point out my admiration for your kind-heartedness supporting those people who have the need for guidance on in this area. Your very own dedication to getting the solution all through came to be surprisingly effective and have in every case allowed individuals just like me to attain their objectives. Your personal important suggestions entails much a person like me and a whole lot more to my colleagues. Warm regards; from each one of us.
supreme clothing http://www.supremeclothingstore.com