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Ex-youth sports official spent misused funds on dentist, iTunes

August 5, 2011 |  9:33 am

The former president of a Glendale youth football organization has been sentenced to serve 16 months in prison for embezzling more than $42,000 from the group to pay for personal bills and items, officials said.

Tina Marquez, 41, pleaded no contest last week to one felony count of grand theft of personal property and another felony count of forgery for stealing funds from the Glendale Bears Youth Football and Cheerleading organization while it was under her leadership, Sandi Gibbons, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney's office, told the Glendale News-Press.

"We are happy with the outcome of the case," said Glendale Bears board member Vincent Muniz. "It's a shame that it happened."

Marquez, who is already serving a two-year prison sentence for disability insurance fraud, was also ordered to repay $42,228 to the group, according to Los Angeles County Superior Court officials. Marquez will serve her 16-month term in addition to the two-year term.

The embezzlement was discovered after parents voiced concerns that Marquez was misappropriating funds. They said they were frustrated that their children weren't wearing updated uniforms and playing with new equipment despite having shelled out more than $250 per player in enrollment fees.

Soon after, board members of the organization discovered that funds were missing and outstanding debts had gone unpaid.

Marquez made cash withdrawals and unauthorized debit card purchases from March 12, 2009, to Sept. 30, 2010, from the group's bank accounts, according to court documents.

She used the money to buy music on iTunes, lease a vehicle and pay for restaurants, groceries, dental visits, gas and clothing services, police said. She also purchased items sent to a California prison inmate, police said.

She was the second group member to embezzle tens of thousands of dollars from the organization since 2008, officials said.

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