SANTA ANA– His arrest in California was years in the making, but finally, an Irvine man is back in the United States and California to face fraud charges for the embezzlement of $3.2 million in public funds from a charter school in Santa Ana. Emilio Vazquez, 61, was extradited from Spain and booked in the Orange County Jail on February 8, 2019.
The history: From 2002 to 2006, Vazquez was the executive director of Albor Charter School in Santa Ana. The Orange County District Attorney’s Office (OCDA) and Franchise Tax Board investigated this case following an audit in 2007. Charges were filed in 2009 and an arrest warrant was issued for Vazquez in the amount of $2 million dollars by the Orange County Superior Court on March 30, 2009.
Vazquez was located in Spain, and in September 2009, the U.S. Department of Justice submitted a request to Spain for his extradition. In April 2010, his extradition was approved. While out on bail in Spain, Vazquez fled to China and was not surrendered to the United States. Vazquez was deported from China to Spain in 2019 and surrendered to the United States Marshals pursuant to his extradition order. Vazquez arrived in Orange County on February 8, 2019 and was booked into the Orange County Jail.
Vazquez was charged on March 3, 2009, with:
- one felony count of misappropriation of public funds,
- one felony count of forgery,
- seven felony counts of conflict of interest in a contract,
- two felony counts of grand theft,
- and sentencing enhancements for aggravated white-collar crime over $500,000 and fraud or embezzlement over $500,000.
Vazquez faces a maximum sentence of 19 years and eight months in state prison. He is in custody on $3.12 million bail and must prove the money came from a legal source before posting bail.