By City News Service
A Marina del Rey man has agreed to plead guilty to charges accusing him of laundering $50,000 out of nearly $370,000 he embezzled from the Girl Scouts while employed by the organization, according to court papers obtained Friday.
Channing Smack was the senior property manager of the Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles. As part of his job, he was responsible for overseeing the organization's 22 properties in the area and hiring outside contractors to perform maintenance and repairs to the various properties.
In his plea agreement, filed this week in federal court in Los Angeles, Smack admitted approving invoices for services purportedly provided by a firm called ZB Land Maintenance & Engineering, which is registered under the name of his deceased brother.
Smack, 51, acknowledged issuing checks to ZB that totaled $368,278, the document shows.
Most of the checks to ZB were deposited into one of two bank accounts opened under the names of the company and the defendant's late brother, according to prosecutors.
Smack agreed to formally plead guilty to one count each of mail fraud and money laundering at an unspecified date in the near future, papers show.
He was arrested Dec. 18, shortly after he withdrew $64,500 from accounts believed to contain proceeds of the scheme. Smack was fired by the Girl Scouts just prior to his arrest, a GSGLA spokeswoman said.
GSGLA spokeswoman Carol Dedrich said the investigation began when Girl Scout officials "discovered some irregularities" in Smack's work and turned the information over to federal prosecutors in Los Angeles.