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Former Vernon mayor resigns

June 11, 2009|Hector Becerra

More than half a century after becoming a councilman in the industrial city his grandfather founded, former Vernon Mayor Leonis Malburg quietly resigned his political seat this week.

The city of about 90 residents sued the 80-year-old Malburg last month, alleging that he improperly had Vernon pay nearly $1.5 million for his legal defense against criminal voter fraud charges leveled against him two years ago by Los Angeles County prosecutors

Malburg spent 35 years as mayor of Vernon before being replaced in April.

"It is with great regret that I am submitting this resignation," Malburg wrote in his resignation letter to the city Monday. Prosecutors allege that Malburg, his wife and son committed fraud by voting and taking elected office in Vernon while not living there. His son, John Malburg, 40, pleaded no contest earlier this year to the charges.

Leonis Malburg, who could go to trial this fall, could not be reached for comment.

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hector.becerra@latimes.com

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