Franklin-McKinley Trustee Accused of Embezzling Campaign Cash Agrees to Resign

A Franklin-McKinley School District trustee accused of embezzling bond campaign cash has announced his resignation. In a letter to Santa Clara County Office of Education Superintendent Mary Ann Dewan, John Lindner said he plans to step down next week.

Click here to read the letter.

Linder’s bowing out—a condition of his plea deal—comes amid mounting pressure from the community to relinquish his seat. Although a petition demanding his resignation garnered only 24 signatures, at least two of his fellow trustees were calling on him to step down.

Now, Linder’s colleagues can appoint someone to carry out the rest of his term.

The 55-year-old school board official was arrested a few months ago on charges that he stole $30,000 in campaign funds. Allegations against Lindner became public in October when the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) noted on an agenda that he agreed to pay back $18,550, according to the Mercury News.

Two months later, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office charged Lindner with grand theft, perjury and violations of state election law for allegedly using money from a 2010 bond measure to give a $12,000 loan to a relative and spending $16,000 on personal expenses, including a plane ticket and lumber for a home remodeling project.

Lindner turned himself in to authorities in December and was released on $35,000 bail.

This week, he pleaded no contest to eight of 10 counts, according to deputy district attorney John Chase, who’s in charge of the DA’s public integrity unit. The judge indicated 60 days jail, Chase said.

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