County official admits to accepting bribes from developer Arman Gabay

The former government employee said he took payments from the West Hollywood developer in exchange for government business

Los Angeles /
Sep.September 06, 2018 11:30 AM
Arman Gabay and the Hawthorne Plaza mall, LA Superior Court (Credit: Pixabay)

A former Los Angeles County official admitted to accepting cash bribes from a prominent West Hollywood real estate developer in exchange for helping him secure a multimillion-dollar leasing deal with the county.

Thomas Shepos has agreed to plead guilty to making false statements to the FBI about the bribe and kickback deal with the developer, Arman Gabay, and to signing a false tax return in 2014, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Federal prosecutors charged Gabay in May. Gabay, who faces up to 10 years in prison, pleaded not guilty.

Authorities say Gabay — who co-founded West Hollywood-based Charles Company, sent the county employee monthly payments of $1,000 over six years, and had offered to buy Sheppos a $1.1 million home in Santa Rosa. Gabay made two offers last year on an eight-acre property in Santa Rosa meant as a bribe to Shepos, federal officials said.

The payments would help secure a 10-year, $45 million lease with county departments at the Hawthorne Plaza mall, which Charles Co. planned to redevelop into a $500 million mixed-use project. The project was scuttled in February.

In Wednesday’s plea agreement, Shepos said he collected $434,000 in bribes over seven years. He also hid $139,000 in income, the bulk of that stemming from those bribes, in his 2014 tax return. Besides the money he allegedly received from Gabay, Shepos also admitted to accepting bribes of up to $300,000 from an electrical contractor.

As part of the plea deal, Shepos faces up to eight years in prison when he is sentenced. [LAT] — Natalie Hoberman


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
From left: Midwood Investment & Development CEO John Usdan, Erewhon CEO Tony Antoci, and Erewhon Studio City at 12833 Ventura Boulevard (Getty Images, Google Maps/Jean-Louis Delezenne, Midwood, Facebook/Tony Antoci)
Luxury grocer Erewhon allegedly failed to pay rent at new Studio City location: lawsuit
Luxury grocer Erewhon allegedly failed to pay rent at new Studio City location: lawsuit
Nile Niami and The One (Getty)
Months after bankruptcy sale, The One spawns another suit
Months after bankruptcy sale, The One spawns another suit
Chris Pearson with 22111 Erwin Street (MTV, Google Maps)
Were landlords negligent in death of reality TV star?
Were landlords negligent in death of reality TV star?
Relevant Group’s Grant King and the Tommie Hotel at 6516 Selma Avenue in Hollywood (Getty Images, Relevant Group, LoopNet)
Relevant Group owes $3M for Tommie hotel project: suit
Relevant Group owes $3M for Tommie hotel project: suit
111 W 7th Street (Getty Images, Google maps)
Laguna Point Properties sues over $400M DTLA deal
Laguna Point Properties sues over $400M DTLA deal
empty lot (iStock)
Critics see thousands of “fake sites” in SoCal housing plans
Critics see thousands of “fake sites” in SoCal housing plans
L.A. Alliance for Human Rights' Elizabeth Mitchell (Getty, L.A. Alliance for Human Rights)
L.A. Alliance doubles down on federal lawsuit over homelessness solution
L.A. Alliance doubles down on federal lawsuit over homelessness solution
Calmwater Capital's Larry Grantham with Coachella (Maxim Hotel Brokerage, Calmwater Capital)
Unfinished Coachella hotel back to lender, up for sale
Unfinished Coachella hotel back to lender, up for sale
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...