Follow us:

The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

March 13, 2012 at 9:51 AM

City sues former Seattle Utilities worker accused of $1 million theft

The city of Seattle has started civil litigation against Joseph Phan, the former Seattle Public Utilities project engineer charged in what authorities say is the largest embezzlement of public funds in recent King County history.

King County prosecutors have charged Phan, 44, with 70 counts of theft for allegedly stealing $1.1 million from the city.  On Friday, the Seattle City Attorney’s Office jumped into the fray by filing a civil claim against Phan, accusing him of “civil fraud, conversion of City funds, breach of fiduciary duty and unjust enrichment,” according to a news release sent out by Kimberly Mills, spokeswoman for City Attorney Pete Holmes.

The city, in its filing, has asked a King County Superior Court judge “to freeze all assets of the former Seattle Public Utilities engineer,” Mills wrote.

“Our goal is full financial recovery for ratepayers through swift and aggressive civil remedies,” Holmes said in the statement.  “The county prosecutor will address the criminal consequences of Mr. Phan’s conduct.”

Phan remains in the King County Jail on $750,000 bail. He is slated to be arraigned on March 19.

Comments | More in Government, The Blotter | Topics: civil suit, fraud, King County Superior Court

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►