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D.A. probing former appraiser in L.A. County assessor's office

February 8, 2012 |  6:10 pm

Los Angeles County prosecutors and officials confirmed Wednesday that an inquiry was launched last year into a former county appraiser at one of the county assessor's district offices.

Other county government sources said the inquiry involves allegations that two firms that help property owners reduce their tax assessments received special treatment from the appraiser at the West District office.

One of the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the case was ongoing, was interviewed by prosecutors.

David Demerjian, a senior deputy district attorney in the public integrity unit, said the inquiry began in November, but he declined to provide any details.

A spokesman for county Assessor John R. Noguez said Wednesday that the office is aware of the inquiry but can't discuss it because it involves a confidential personnel matter.

Noguez is a longtime office staffer who worked his way up from a student intern to deputy assessor. He won election to the assessor job in 2010 with the backing of longtime former assessor Rick Auerbach.

The district attorney’s probe was first reported by the Los Cerritos Community News.

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-- Ruben Vives

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