Prosecutors: Ex-Stockton mayor stole money from kids club

STOCKTON, Calif. (AP) — Prosecutors said Monday former Stockton Mayor Anthony Silva allegedly stole hundreds of thousands of dollars that were intended for a youth club.

San Joaquin County Deputy District Attorney Robert Himelblau said the theft between 2010 and 2014 involved money Silva received from the Boys & Girls Clubs of America to run the Stockton Boys & Girls Club, which is now called the Stockton Kids Club, the Sacramento Bee reported.  

"A significant portion of money flowed from the Boys & Girls Club to Anthony Silva's personal account," Himelblau said.

The indictment also alleges Silva used credit cards from the club to pay for trips to the Philippines and South Lake Tahoe and for a recurring charge for an online dating site, Filipino Cupid.

Silva, 42, pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Silva's attorneys have alleged prosecutors are pursuing the former mayor for "political" reasons. Himelblau denied that.

The Stockton Boys & Girls Club lost its national charter in 2013 after Silva declined a $49,000 grant from the club's parent organization rather than submit to a financial audit, according to the Stockton Record. That same year, the Stockton Unified School District chose not to renew a $780,000 contract with the Boys & Girls Club to operate after-school programs at 12 district campuses.

FBI agents and investigators from the San Joaquin County District Attorney's Office last Thursday served search warrants at Silva's home and the Stockton Kids Club.

Silva was arrested Sunday at San Francisco International Airport as he returned from Colombia.

Last August, Silva was charged in neighboring Amador County with a felony of secretly recording confidential communications without consent. He also faced misdemeanor charges of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, providing alcohol to people under 21 and child endangerment.

He pleaded not guilty to the charges and argued the case was politically motivated and an effort to sway voters in November when he lost his bid for re-election.

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